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Full text of "The chronicle of Henry of Huntingdon. Comprising the history of England, from the invasion of Julius Cæsar to the accession of Henry II. Also, The acts of Stephen, king of England and duke of Normandy"

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BOHN'S   ANTIQUAKIAN   LIBRAKY. 


HENKY    OF    HUNTINGDON. 


Digitized  by  LjOOQIC 


1»R1NTCD   BY   WOO0FAEL  AND   KINDEB; 

ANGEL  COURT,    8KINKBR  STUEKT. 


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I 


THE 


CHRONICLE  \ 


pENRY    OF    HUNTINGDOK^ 


COMPRISING 


THE    HISTORY    OF    ENGLAND,    FROM   THE    INVASION     OF 
JULIUS  C^SAR  TO  THE  ACCESSION  OF  HENRY  II. 


THE  ACTS  OF  STEPHEN, 

KIKG     OF     EirOLAND     AND     DUKE     OF     NORHAKDT... 


TRANSLATED  AND  EDITED 

By  THOMAS  FORESTER,  A.M., 

AUTUOB  OP  "  KOKWAT  IK  1848  AHD  1819,"  ETC.,   ETC^ 


LONDON: 
UENRY  G.  BOHN,  YORK  STREET,  COVENT  GAUDEF^ 

MDCCCUII. 


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CONTENTS. 


Sditor-'s  Prbpacb 

Iekry  op  Huntingdon's  Preface 

fflB  History  op  the  English 

'he  Letter  to  Walter  on  the  Illustrious  Men  op  his  age 
'he  Acts  op  King  Stephen,  by  an  Anonymous  Author 

General  Index 

fcjDEX  to  Huntingdon's  Poems 


PAGE 

vii 

XXY 

1-300 

301-319 

323-430 

431-442 

442 

DESCRIPTION  OF  THE  FRONTISPIECE. 

The  plate  is  copied  from  a  pen-and-ink  drawing  in  the  margin  of  a 
[S.  of  Huntingdon's  History,  in  the  British  Museum,  of  the  fourteenth 
•ntorj'.  One  of  King  Stephen's  barons,  Baldwin  Fitz-Qilbert,  appears  in 
le  act  of  addressing  the  royal  army  before  the  battle  of  Lincoln,  the  issue  of 
'hich  was  so  disastrous  to  Stephen's  fortunes,  he  having  been  taken  priso- 
ler  on  the  field.  Baldwin  is  standing  on  a  hillock,  according  to  the  hiS' 
bry,  and  leaning  on  his  battle-axe.  The  army  is  represented  by  its  leaders-^ 
jnights  in  chain  armour — among  whom  we  discover,  by  the  device  on  his 
(lield,  one  of  the  powerful  family  of  De  Clare,  to  which  Baldwin  belonged. 
Itephen  himself,  distinguished  by  the  diadem  encircling  his  helmet,  stands 
*  front  of  the  group,  listening  to  the  address  which,  we  are  told,  he  deputed 
Baldwin  to  make,  because  his  own  voice  was  not  sufficiently  powerful.  An 
attendant  has  dismounted,  and  is  holding  his  horse. 


t  Digitized  by  LjOOQIC 


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PREFACE    BY    THE    EDITOfi. 


The  credit  to  be  attached  to  an  historical  writer  depends  so 
much  on  his  individual  character,  and  his  opportunities  of 
4icquiring  information,  that  the  student  must  naturally  wish 
to  know  something  of  the  personal  history  of  an  audior  to 
whose  works  his  attention  is  invited.  Such  memoirs  are 
frequently  compiled  from  scanty  materials,  but  it  may  be 
reasonably  expected  that  their  details,  however  defective,  be 
at  least  correct  as  far  as  they  extend.  The  author,  one  of 
our  earliest  national  historians,  the  most  valuable  of  whose 
works  is  now  presented  for  the  first  time  to  tlie  English 
reader,  happily  supplies  the  means  of  satisfying  a  natiu-al 
curiosity,  in  the  incidental  references  of  a  personal  nature 
which  may  be  collected  from  them.  It  is,  therefore,  some- 
what singular,  that  most  of  the  writers  who  have  supplied 
biographical  notices  of  one  so  well  known  as  Henry  of 
Huntingdon,  should  be  at  variance  with  each  other,  while 
they  have  been  led  into  some  inaccuracies.  A  careful  exa- 
mination, however,  of  his  own  works  will  serve  to  place 
the  few  facts  of  his  personal  and  literary  histoiy,  to  be 
gleaned  from  them,  on  a  correct  footing. 

There  appears  little  doubt  that  our  author  was  a  native 
-of  Lincoln,  or  of  some  part  of  that  formerly  very  extensive 
3nd  important  diocese ;  and  that  he  was  bom  towM^ds  the 
close  of  the  eleventh  century,  probably  between  the  years 
1080  and  1090.  His  fathers  name  was  Nicholas,  and  that 
he  was  an  ecclesiastic  of  some  distinction  in  the  church 
of  Lincoln,  we  learn  from  an  affectionate  tribute  to  his 


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Vm  EDITORS  PREFACE. 

memory  in  the  eighth  Book  of  his  History.  It  would 
appear  from  this  avowal  of  his  parentage,  that  the  ch'- 
cumstance  of  his  heing  the  son  of  a  priest  was  consi- 
dered no  blemish  on  Henry's  origin ;  the  struggles  of  the 
papal  court  to  enforce  the  celibacy  of  the  secular  clergy 
not  having  at  tliat  time  been  successful  in  England.  Still, 
however,  our  historian  seems  to  betray  some  personal  feel- 
ing in  his  remarks  on  the  act  of  the  synod  held  at  London 
A.D.  IIOJJ,  which  prohibited  the  clergy  from  living  with 
wives,  "  a  thing,"  he  observes,  **not  before  forbidden,"  while 
he  cautiously  adds,  that  **  some  saw  danger  in  a  strictness 
which,  requiring  a  continence  above  their  strength,  might 
lead  them  to  disgrace  their  Christian  profession."  This 
feeling  further  appears  in  tlie  evident  satisfaction  witli 
which,  "  despite  of  any  Koman,  though  he  be  a  prelate, ' 
he  tells  tlie  story  of  the  incontinence  of  the  cardinal  who 
inveighed  so  bitterly  against  the  married  clergy  in  that 
synods 

Some  passages  in  oiu*  author's  "  Letter  to  Walter,"  trans- 
lated in  flie  present  volume,  have  led  to  a  conjecture  that  his 
father  Nicholas  held  the  archdeaconry  of  Huntingdon,  to 
which  Henry  was  afterwards  preferred ;  for  in  enumerating 
tlie  dignitaries  of  the  chiu-ch  of  Lincoln,  he  mentions 
Nicholas^  as  the  Archdeacon  of  Himtingdon  to  whom  he 
himself  succeeded;  though  he  does  not  call  him  his  father, 
probably  because  he  was  writing  to  a  friend  familiar  with 
his  family  history.  The  terms  "  Star  of  the  church,"  &c., 
which  he  applies  to  his  father  in  the  poetical  epitaph 
composed  on  his  death  ^,  seem  to  imply  that  he  held  a  high 
ecclesiastical  position ;  and  he  again  takes  occasion  to  pay  a 
tribute  of  fiUal  duty  in  the  "  Letter  to  Walter,"  in  which  he 
speaks  of  the  deceased  archdeacon  as  "  distinguished  no 
less  by  the  graces  of  his  person  than  by  tliose  of  his  mind.' 
He  then  proceeds  to  give  an  account  of  his  own  appoint- 
ment, relating  that  "  about  the  time  of  the  death  of  Nicholas, 
who  was  Archdeacon  of  Cambridge,  as  well  as  of  Hunt- 
ingdon and  Hertford,  when  Cambridgeshire  was  detached 
from  the  see  of  Lincoln  and  attached  to  a  new  bishopric, 
he  himself  succeeded  to  the  archdeaconry  of  the  two  re- 

'  History,  pp.  241.  252.  «  Letter  to  Walter,  p.  305. 

3  History,  p.  244. 


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EDITORS  PREFACE.  IX 

maining  counties."  Ely  was  tiie  new  bishopric,  created,  ^ 
Matthew  Paris  relates,  by  Henry  I.  in  the  year  1109;  and 
as  our  author' informs  us  that  his  father  died  a.d.  1110, 
there  seems  to  be  a  significance  in  the  phrase  that, 
"  about  the  time "  of  the  death  of  Nicholas,  he  himself 
succeeded  to  the  archdeaconry  of  two  of  the  counties. 
The  appointment  may  have  been  made  in  the  lifetime, 
and  on  the  resignation  of  the  former  incmnbent;  but, 
however  this  may  be,  the  account  furnishes  almost  con- 
clusive evidence  that  Nicholas,  the  father  of  our  historian, 
preceded  him  as  Archdeacon  of  Huntingdon,  and  that 
Hertfordshire  was  attached  to  that  archdeaconry. 

While  yet  "  a  mere  child,"  Henry  was  admitted  into 
the  family  of  Robert  Bloet,  a  prelate  of  great  talents  and 
influence,  who  held  the  see  of  London  from  a.d.  109S 
to  1123,  taking  a  distinguished  part  in  the  civil,  as  well 
as  the  ecclesiastical,  affairs  of  the  time.  Our  author  gives 
a  lively  account  in  his  "Letter  to  Walter"^  of  the  siunp- 
tuous  magnificence  of  the  bishop's  household,  in  which 
he  had  opportunities  of  associating  with  noble,  and  even 
royal*,  youths,  who,  according  to  the  custom  of  the  age, 
were  nurtured  in  such  establishments.  Here  he  pur- 
sued his  studies  under  the  tuition  of  Albinus  of  Anjou, 
a  canon  of  Lincoln,  and  subsequently  Abbot  of  Ramsey, 
of  whom  he  speaks  in  terms  befitting  his  learning  and 
worth. 

Henry  appears  to  have  continued  in  the  Bishop  Bloet's 
family  until  he  arrived  at  manhood,  and  probably  received 
from  him,  as  his  fii-st  preferment,  a  canonry  of  Lincoln; 
which  Bale^  states  as  a  fact,  though  he  does  not  refer  to  any 
authority  for  it  Our  author  informs  us,  that  during  these 
early  years,  he  composed  several  books  of  epigrams,  satires, 
sacred  hymns  and  amatory  poems,  which  he  afterwards 
published  with  his  more  important  works.  He  could  not 
have  been  much  more  than  thirty  years  of  age  at  the 
time  of  his  appointment  to  the  archdeaconry,  and  he 
was  probably  indebted  for  his  early  promotion  to  so 
important  an  office,  to  the  estimation  in  which  his 
talents  and  his*  father's  character  were  held  by  the  bi- 
shop. 

»  P.  302.  '  P.  307.  '  "  lUustrium  Britannise  Scriptorum." 


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X  editor's  pretace. 

♦  OnihBdeafti  oFEishop  Bloct,  in  the  year  112^8,  itappe«r» 
HiKt  Bishop  Alexander  de  "Blois,  his  snccessor  in  the  see 
of  Lincohi,  becoming  sensiWe  of  Henry  oi  Huntingdon's 
extended  knowledge  and  aptitude  for  business,  admitted 
htm  to  the  same  confidence  and  familiarity  which  he  enjoyed 
with  his  predecessor,  and  employed  him  frequently  in  im- 
poftant  affairs.  Both  Bale  and  Pitts  ^  state  that  he  accom- 
panied Bishop  Alexander  to  Rome;  but  they  hare  not 
informed  us  on  what  occasion.  The  bishop  went  there 
twice,  in  1125  and  1144,  and  it  is  most  probable  that 
our  author  attended  him  in  both  his  journeys,  as,  although, 
he  does  not  mention  it  in  express  terms,  his  manner 
^f  speaking  of  his  patron's  munificence,  which  gained 
for  him  at  the  Boman  court  the  surname  of  "  The  Magni- 
ficent," conveys  the.  impression  of  his  haying,  on  botJi 
occasions,  been  an  eye-witness  of  his  reception.  Pitts  also 
intimates  that,  after  his  return.  Bishop  Alexander  preferred 
Henry  to  the  ai'chdeaconry,  on  account  of  his  faithful  ser- 
vices and  his  great  learning;  but  it  seems  clear,  that  he 
owed  his  promotion  to  the  patronage  of  Bishop  Bloet  many 
years  before. 

The  History  of  England  was  probably  commenced  soon 
after  Bishop  Alexander's  rettmi  from  his  first  journey. 
•It  was  undertaken  at  his  request,  and  dedicated  to  him. 
The  first  part,  comprising  seven  of  the  eight  Books  in- 
cluded in  the  present  volume,  and  terminating  with  the 
Teign  of  Henry  I.,  was  given  to  the  world  soon  after  that 
king's  death  in  11S5.  Thirteen  years  afterwards  Hunt- 
ingdon continued  his  History  to  ihe  period  of  the  death 
«f  Bishop  Alexander,  the  liiirteenth  year  of  Stephen's 
reign,  a.d.  1148.  This  portion  of  the  work  forms  the  first 
part  of  the  eighth  Book,  according  to  the  present  arrange- 
ment, concluding  with  an  aspiration  for  the  welfare,  in 
"those  evil  times,"  of  his  patron's  successor,  the  young 
bishop,  Bobert  de  Chaisney.  Himtin<2:don  afterwards 
brou^it  down  the  course  of  events  to  the  death  of  Stephen 
and  the  accession  of  Henry  II.  in  1154;  the  latter  pages  of 
the  seventh  Book,  and  the  whole  of  the  eighth  Book  of  the 
History,  in  its  present  form,  being  occupied  with  this  part 
of  the  narrative.     It  may  be  inferred  from  a  sentence  with 

*  *'  Fitsias  de  illtistrrbus  Angliae  Scriptoribus." 


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which  OB©  of  like  MSB.,  a^arently  ncTised  %  tiie  aatthor 
hMDBelf,  conchidag — "  The  accessicm  of  a  new  king  demaods 
a  new  Book  f *-^1imt  he  inui  farmed  the  intention  of 
adding  a  further  contanimtion  to  the  Histrwy,  relating  the 
transaetions  of  tfee  reign  of  Henry  II.  Hie  death  pro- 
bahlj  frastrated  this  design,  for  he  speaks  of  himself  as  aa 
old  man  in  his  **  Ijetter  to  Walter,"  published  many  years 
before,  and  it  is  supposed  that  he  did  not  long  survive  the 
accession  of  Henry  II.,  being  at  that  time,  it  may  be  calcu- 
lated, seventy  years  of  age  or  upwards.  The  precise  date 
of  his  death  is  tmfcnown,  nor  can  anything  further  be  added 
to  Hie  slight  notices  whidi  have  been  now  giv^i  of  his  per- 
sonal history. 

Henry  of  Huntingdon's  other  works — ^besides  the  His- 
tory of  England,  and  the  epigrams,  satires,  hjinns  and  other 
poems,  already  mentioned — consist  of : 

1.  An  Epistle  to  Henry  I.  "  On  the  Succession  of  the 
Jewish,  Assyrian,  Persian,  Macedonian,  and  Homan  kings 
and  emperors  to  his  own  time ;''  which  is  supposed  to  have 
been  written  in  the  year  1180. 

%  An  Epistle  to  Waiin,  the  Britmi,  containing  an  account 
of  the  ancient  Bntieh  kings,  from  Brute  to  Cadwaller.  The 
author  accounts  for  his  having  commenced  the  History  of 
fingland  from  the  invasion  of  Julius  Ctesar  by  his  having 
been  unable  at  that  time  to  discover  any  records  of  an 
earlier  period.  He  then  tells  his  friend,  that  while  at 
Ibe  abbey  of  Bee,  in  Norniandy^  on  his  way  to  Rome, 
ke  met  Robert  Del  Mont  (called  also  De  Torigny),  a 
mon^  of  that  monastery,  and  a  great  antiquarian,  who,  con- 
versing with  him  on  the  subject  of  his  History  lately  pub- 
lished, showed  him,  to  his  great  surprise,  tlie  British  History 
<tf  Geoffrey  of  Monmouth,  recently  written,  from  which  he 
retracted  the  accotmts  of  the  British  kings  given  in  his 
letter.  The  year  1139  is  fixed  as  the  date  of  Siis  Epistle, 
on  the  authority  of  Pertz\  who  quotes  a  passage  from  it 
to  the  effect  that  it  vms  written  in  that  year  during  the 
author's  journey  to  Rome  in  company  with  Archbishop 
Theobald,  who  was,  or  had  been,  Abbot  of  Bee.  The 
editor  of  the   "Monumenta  Britannica,"^  who  does  not 

'  "  Monumenta  (Jennanica,"  rol.  ri.  p.  481.  '  Preface,  p.  89. 


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Xll  EDITORS   FBEFACE. 

notice  Huntingdon's  attending  Archbishop  Alexander  to 
Ronje,  while  most  of  his  other  biographers  agree  in  that 
particular,  adopts  this  statement.  Wharton,  however,  in 
his  "  Anglia  Sacra,"  gives  another  version,  quoting  a  Ma- 
nuscript of  the  Epistle  which  says  nothing  of  the  arch- 
bishop s  journey;  whence  Wharton  conjectures  that  Hun- 
tingdon was  at  Bee  in  company  with  Bishop  Alexander 
on  their  way  to  Kome  when  ^e  letter  to  Warin  was 
written. 

3.  An  Epistle  to  his  friend  Walter,  "  On  Contempt  of  the 
World,  or  on  the  Bishops  and  other  Illustrious  Men  of  hig 
Age."  Wharton^  and  Hardy '^  agree  in  assigning  the  date  of 
this  celebrated  Epistle  to  the  year  1145,  or  thereabouts; 
but  it  bears  internal  evidence  of  having  been  written  many 
yeai's  before.  Not  only  does  it  mention  Bishop  Alexander 
who  died  in  1148,  as  living  at  the  time,  but,  moreover, 
expressly  asserts  of  Henry  I.  that  "his  reign  has  now 
lasted  thirty-five  years"  and  quotes  a  prediction  that  it 
would  not  last  two  years  longer,  which  was  singularly  veri- 
fied, as  Henry  I.  died  in  the  month  of  December  of  that 
same  year  1135.  Huntingdon,  indeed,  in  a  former  pas- 
sage, refers  to  his  History,  to  explain  the  discrepancy 
between  the  character  he  has  drawn  of  Henry  I.  in  the 
two  works,  but  it  is  most  probable  that  both  were  pub- 
lished together  shortly  after  the  king's  death,  this  para- 
graph being  inserted  after  the  Epistle  was  written.  The 
order  in  which  he  airanged  his  works,  as  will  subsequently 
appear,  confirms  tliis  conclusion;  but,  however  this  may 
be,  nothing  can  be  clearer  than  that  Huntingdon  himself 
assigns  the  year  1135  as  tlie  date  of  his  letter  to  his  friend 
Walter. 

4.  Our  author's  only  otlier  work  is  an  account  of 
English  saints  and  their  miracles,  principally  collected 
from  Bede,  the  intention  of  compiling  which  he  had 
announced  in  an  early  part  of  his  Histoiy. 

There  appears  to  be  no  copy  extant  of  what  may  be 
called  the  first  edition  of  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  Histoiy 
of  England,  which  ended  with  the  reign  of  Henry  I. ;  but 

>  Preface  to  tbe  "  Anglia  Sacra." 

^  Preface  to  the  "  Mouumenta  Britannica." 


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EDITORS   PREFACE.  XIU 

the  Arundel  MS.,  forming,  so  to  speak,  the  second  edition, 
ends  with  the  death  of  Bishop  Alexander  de  Blois  in  th^ 
year  1148.  So  far  as  it  extends,  the  Arundel  MS.  follows 
the  same  order  of  arrangement  as  those  MSS.,  which  contain 
the  entire  History  together  with  the  whole  series  of  Henry 
of  Huntingdon's  prose  works.  They  are  divided  into  ten 
Books,  of  which  the  first  seven  correspond  with  the  Books 
similarly  numbered  in  the  present  volume.  The  eighth 
Book  in  the  MSS.  of  both  editions,  according,  it  would 
appear,  to  Huntmgdon's  own  arrangement,  includes  the 
three  Epistles,  to  King  Henry  I.,  to  Warin,  and  Walter, 
aheady  mentioned.  The  ninth  Book  contains  the  account 
of  saints  and  miracles  compiled  from  Bede.  The  tenth 
Book  of  the  complete  MSS.  of  the  prose  works  continijes 
the  History  fi:om  the  death  of  Henry  I.  to  the  accession 
of  Henry  II.  Two  beautiful  MSS.  in  the  Library  at 
Lambeth  contain  two  additional  Books,  comprising  our 
author's  poetical  works;  the  eleventh  consisting  of  the 
satires  and  epigrams,  and  the  twelfth  of  the  hymns  and 
other  poems  already  referred  to. 

Henry  of  Huntingdon's  History  of  England  was  first 
printed  in  Sir  Henry  Savile's  collection  of  the  "  Kerum  An- 
glicarum  Scriptores,"  published:  in  the  year  1596.  It  was 
reprinted  at  Frankfort  in  1603,  and  the  first  six  Books  are 
given  in  the  "  Moniunenta  Historica  Britannica,"  pub- 
lished under  the  auspices  of  the  Record  Commission  in  the 
year  1848.  Savile  omitted  the  eighth  and  ninth  Books  of 
the  manuscript  copies,  as  interrupting  the  course  of  the  narra- 
tive, and  made  the  tenth  Book  of  Huntingdon's  order  the 
eighth  of  his  own.  This  arrangement  is  followed  in  the 
present  volume,  but  our  author's  tract  on  the  bishops  and 
illustrious  men  of  his  time,  contained  in  his  "  Letter  to 
Walter,"  and  forming  originally  a  section  of  the  eighth 
Book  of  the  History  appeared  to  be  so  valuable  an  histo- 
rical document,  and  throwing  such  additional  hght  on  the 
characters  of  many  eminent  personages  connected  with  the 
History,  that,  although  it  could  not  be  inserted  in  its  former 
place,  it  was  considered  desirable  to  append  it  to  the 
History. 

Mr.  Petrie's  collation  of  Savile's  edition  with  four  of  the 


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MSS.  has  supplied  a  text  of  great  piirity  for  ihe.  first 
sis  Books  of  HttQtingdon'a  Histoiy  which  only  are  print6d 
in  his  collection;  He  observes,  that  the  variations  obtained 
1:^  the  collation  of  the  first  seven  Books  were,  on  the  whole, 
very  few,  Mid  *those  mostly  verbid ;  but  that  in  the  eighdi 
Book  they  were  much  more  valuable,  rectifying  many  mis- 
takes of  Savile's  printed  text,  and  affording  several  additional 
Mr.  Petrie's  notes  of  these  variations  having  been  lost,";_it  wias 
deemed  advisable  that  a  fresh  collation  of  the  eighth  "Book 
should  be  made  with  two  valuable  MSS.  in  the  British  Mu- 
seum, Axundel,  No.  48,  and  Boyal  13,  B.  6^  both  on  vellum, 
and  of  the  thirteenth  or  fourteenth  century.  This  collation, 
some  of  the  results  of  wliich  are  referred  to  in  tlie  notes, 
has  not  only  served  to  improve  the  present  version  of  the 
eighth  Bookl  but  an  examination  of  the  MSS.  has  supplied 
the  mealis  of  forming  correct  conclusions  as  to  the  order  of 
Huntingdon's^  woriis  and  the  dates  of  their  publication.  The 
"Letter  to  Walter"  vms  printed  in  Wharton's  *'Anglia 
Sacra," ^  and  in  Dacher'a  *' SpicUegium ;"  ^  both  of  which 
editions  have  been  consulted  for  the  present  translation. 

Henry  of  Huntingdon's  merits  as  an  historical  writer 
were,  perhapa,^  overrated  by  the  old  bibliographers,  Pitts, 
Polydore  Virgil,  and  John  Leland,  while  modem  critips 
have  done  hhn  but  scanty  justice.  The  value  of  his 
History  varies,  of  course,  with  its  different  epochs.  The 
earlier  Books  being,  as  he  infonnsus  in  the  Preface,  a  com- 
pilation from  Bede's  Eflclesiastical  History  and  the  Chroni- 
cles, meaning  the  Saixon  Ghronicle,  they  are  of  little  worth, 
although  occasionally  supplying  additional  facts.  The  third 
Book,  descaibing  the  conversion  to  Christianity  of  the 
several  kingdoms  of  the:  Heptarchy,  though  wholly  compiled 
from  Bede,  has  the  merit  of  being  a  well  digested,  epitome, 
and  of  omitting  the  greater  pafft  of  the  mira«ulous  accounts 
which  b^eak  th/s  threadiof  the  venerable  historian's  narrative, 
our  author  jiadicioualy  reserving  them;  for  ai  separate  book 
pindeed,  Heniy  of  Hiaatin^lMi's  works  in:  general  are  inter- 
Bperaed  with  ywsy  few  of  those  sacied  l^ends  which,  however 
diaraeteristle.^  the.age^  mar  the  historical  effect^.thongh  th^ 

'  Preface  to  the  "  Monumenta  Historica  Britannica,"  p.  8t. 
•  Vol.  ik  pi  994i,  r      '  fiQia..Tiii  f^  167.    . 


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.£J}1X0£.£  rMS^AQE.  XV 

mBi^  not  weaken  our  reliance  on  the  generai  truthfulness  of 
the  narrative.  In  this  respect  he  contrasts  favourably^  not 
osaXy  with  Bade,  but  with  Roger  de  Wendover  and  most 
other  cluroniclecs,  not  excepting  his  illustrious  contemporary 
William  of  Malmesbury.  Hia  freqvient  references  to  ihk 
immediate  interposition  of  Providence  may  be  unsuited  Uk 
the  taste  of  mauy  readers  of  the  present  day,  but  it  must 
not  be  forgotten,  that  while  he  sometimes  claims  the  di* 
'  vine  interference  for  veiy  questionable  objects,  he  gene- 
rally  takes  just,  views  of  the  hiunan  means  employed  ia 
working  out  the  dispensations  of  Providence. 

Approaching  his  own  times,  om^  autlior  assumes  the  cha- 
racter of  an  origLual  historian,  and,,  ajt  the  comm^ncemenl 
of  his  seventh  Book^.  tells,  us  that  now  he  has  to  deal 
with  events  which  had  passed  imder  his  own  observation^ 
or  which  had  been  related  to  him  by  eye-witnesses* 
Still,  however,  the  Saxon  Chronicle  seems  to  have  been  the 
basis  of  his  History  for  the  r<eign  of  William  II.,  although 
additional  matter  is  frequently  introduced.  But  the  latter 
part,  of  the  seventh,  and  tbe  whole  of  the  eightli  Book, 
containing  the  reigns  of  Henry  I.  and  Ste^^hen,  are  more 
viiuable,  the  author  having  been  eantemporaiy  with  the 
eyents  he  describes,  and  possessing  singular  opportunities 
of  being  well  informed  on  all  that,  passed,  from  his  familiajr 
intercourse  with  Bishops  Bloet.  and  Alexander  de  Blo^ 
the  nephew  of  IU)ger  Bishop  of  Salisbury,  the  greatest 
.  statesmen  of  the  time ;  as  well  as  from  his  personal  know- 
ledge of  many  other  emineBLtcharactera,.  as  we  learn  from 
his  "  Letter  to  Walter;" 

Borrowing  large  portijonaof  his  mai»rial&  from  the  Chror  1 
nicies,,  it  was  natural  that  Huntingdon's.  History,  which 
Mattliew'  of  Westminster,  indeed^  caJds.  "his  Chronicles^" 
should  partake  of  the  sam€^  chai'aater.  Altliough  the  scienca 
of  history  may  be  considea:ed.  a^  then  in  a.tiansition  state, 
Henry  of  Huntin^on  ha&  the  merit  of  being  among  ihe 
earliest  of  our  national.  HistedanS}.as>  distinguished  from 
Chronidersv  The  skekl^n-  of  history  mw  began  to  h» 
invented  wkh  consis^ncy^  oi  f^sm  mA  prc^rtions^  tlte^ 
scattered  limbs  to  be  united,  and  life  breathed  into  the 
dry  bones.    Political  changes  were  traced  to  their  origin,. 


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XVI  EDITORS   PREFACE. 

events  connected  with  their  causes,  and  developed  in  their 
effects,  and  the  lines  of  individual  character  fully  and  vi- 
gorously drawn.  Himtingdon's  coloinring  is  often  florid, 
but  he  was  too  much  of  a  chronicler  to  fall  into  the  error 
of  some  of  four  most  esteemed  modem  historians,  who, 
imder  a  specious  guise,  and  in  polished  sentences,  convey 
a  very  small  amount  of  exact  information.  The  genius, 
however,  which  enabled  him  to  form  the  plan  of  his  ex- 
tended work,  distributing  it  into  the  successive  periods 
of  the  Roman,  the  Saxon,  the  Danish,  and  the  Norman 
occupations  of  England,  and  the  sagacity  of  his  obsei-va- 
tions,  while  tracing  the  origin  of  some  of  these  i*evo- 
lutions,  distinguish  him  from  the  mere  recorder  of  passing 
events.  The  climax  of  the  long  series  of  events  is  wrought 
out  with  dramatic  effect,  when,  in  glowing  language, 
but  without  losing  sight  of  historical  truth,  he  pictures 
England  aa  panting  for  a  dehverer  fix)m  her  ruined  and 
distracted  state,  hailing,  with  exultation,  the  accession  of 
Henry  II.,  and  entering  on  an  era  of  peace  and  prosperity, 
the  anticipation  of  which  forms  a  happy  conclusion  to  the 
work. 

The  freedom  with  which  he  canvasses  the  conduct  of  the 
great  men  of  the  time,  both  in  his  History  and  his 
**  Letter  to  Walter,"  not  sparing  even  his  patron,  King 
Henry  I.,  and  the  two  Williams,  his  immediate  predeces- 
sors, gives  a  favourable  idea  of  our  author's  independence 
of  character,  and  exhibits,  what  we  should  call,  the  liberty 
of  the  press,  in  a  light  we  should  hardly  have  expected  under 
the  iron  sway  of  the  Norman  kings.  But  suspicion  is  thrown 
on  parts  of  his  narrative  which  are  unsupported  by  concurrent 
testimony.  That  would,  however,  be  a  singular  canon  of 
criticism  which  should,  on  such  ground,  discard  the  state- 
ments of  an  old  writer,  whose  general  credit  is  unimpeach-' 
able,  where  there  is  no  improbability  in  the  circumstances 
related;  and  Huntingdon's  History  contains  several  inci- 
dents, unnoticed  by  other  contemporaneous  writers,  which 
we  should  be  reluctant  to  surrender  ^.  No  one  could  have 
clearer  views  of  the  duty  of  an   historian,   as    we  have 

1  For  example!  nee  the  notes  pp.  195  and  199.    See  also  the  note,  p.  1S9. 


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'S 


EDITORS  PREFACE. 


already  shown,  and  as  is  also  apparent  in  the  Preface 
to  his  **  Letter  to  Walter :"  **  I  shall  relate  nothing/'  he 
says,  "  that  has  not  been  told  before,  except  what  is 
within  my  own  knowledge" — ^in  which  expression  he  evi- 
dently includes  the  testimony  of  other  credible  persons — 
**  tiie  only  evidence,"  he  adds,  "  which  can  be  deemed  au- 
thentic." He  appears,  on  the  whole,  to  have  faithfully 
adhered  to  this  sound  principle,  but  his  great  fault  being 
amplification,  it  occasionally  leads  him  to  exaggeration  in 
<letiuls,  which  the  careful  reader  will  easily  distinguish  from 
the  fabrication  of  facts.  There  are  very  few  instances  in 
which  any  serious  doubts  of  his  veracity  can  be  entertained, 
and  in  these  it  is  fair  to  suppose  tliat  he  has  been  misled 
by  the  authorities  on  which  he  relied. 

A  fervid  imagination,  and  a  diflfiise  style » of  composition, 
naturally  betrayed  oiu*  historian  into  these  occasioned  errors. 
Such  was  his  poetical  temperament,  which,  as  we  have 
already  learnt,  he  cultivated  from  his  earliest  yeai's,  that 
even  his  own  vivid  prose  sometimes  failed  of  giving  ex- 
pression to  his  feelings,  and  he  vents  them  in  verse.  In 
an  age  when  it  might  have  been  little  expected,  the  court 
of  Henry  Beavxilerc  was  the  resort  o£  the  learned ;  our  author 
dedicated  his  first  historical  work  to  that  patron  of  letters  ; 
William  of  Malmesbury  found  a  Mecsenas  in  the  king's 
natural  son,  the  Earl  of  Gloucester,  and  his  two  accom- 
plished queens,  Matilda  and  Alice,  successively,  extended 
their  favour  to  men  of  genius.  Geoffrey  Gaimar  and  his 
brother,  minnesingers  of  Normandy,  flocked  to  their  pre- 
sence to  celebrate  their  praises  and  partake  of  their  bounty. 
Nor  were  there  wanting  scholars  who  paid  theh*  homage  to 
the  Latin  Muse,  and  made  their  offerings  at  the  royal  shrhie. 
lu  most  instances,  alUteration  and  rhyme  disfigure  the 
metres,  and  fanciful  conceits  and  quaint  antithesis  mark 
the  wide  departure  of  the  versifiers  of  those  times  from  the 
classical  models  they  professed  to  follow.  Henry  of  Hun- 
tingdon, though  not  entirely  free  from  these  faults,  was  one 
of  the  few  composers  of  Latin  verse,  in  that  or  preceding 
c^turies,  who  rose  above  the  common  level.  He  occasion- 
ally writes  with  a  freedom  and  elegance,  a  pathos  and 
poetic  feeling,  which  have  lightened  the  task  of  making 

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viii  EWi^OR'S  PREPatCE; 

a   veimon  of'  his  poems    suited  to  tike  taste  of  modem 
times; 

Th«  chronology  of  the  History  is  very  defective.     During 
the  Saxon  period,  it  is  based  on  the  reigns  of  the  kings  of 
Wessex,  witii  reference  to  which  the  series  of  events  in 
the  other  kingdoms  of  the  Heptarchy  is  calculated,  and  the 
whole  is   adapted  rather  unsatisfactorily  to  the  reckoning 
of  the  S»xt«i  Chromcle.     This  cumbrous  system  occasions 
great  confusion;     His  subsequent  chronological  references 
^re  scanty  and  erroneous.     Some  of  the  errors  are  pointed 
out  in  the  notes,  and  the  dates  have  been  generally  rectified 
from  the  Saxon  Chronicle,  and,  when  that  fails,  from  later 
authorities.     The  subject  is  fiilly  discussed  in  the  Preface 
to  the  "  Monutnenta  Historica  Britanniea,"  and  the  intro- 
ductory remarks'  on  the  chronology  of  the  medieval  histo- 
rians prefixed  to  that  work. 

-,  "  The  Acts  of  King  Stephen,"  now  first  translated  into 
English,  forms  an  appropriate  sequel  to  Henry  of  Hun- 
tingdon's History.  Nothing  is  known  of  the  anonymous 
author  of  this  valuable  fragment ;  for  such  it  is,  time  and 
neglect  having  so  injured  the  only  MS.  copy  extant,  that 
several  portions  of  the  •narrative  are  obliterated,  and  the 
concluding  pages  entirely  lost.  The  work,  however,  bears 
internal  evidence  of  having  been  written  by  an  author  con- 
temporaneous with  the  events  related,  an  eye-witness  of 
many  of  them,  and  not  only  present  at  the  councils  where 
affairs  of  state  were  debated,  but  privy  to  the  king's  most 
secret  demgn^  and  springs  of  action.  As  he  also  appears 
to  have  been  an  ecclesiastic,  it  has  been  conjectured  that 
he  was  the  king's  confessor.  The  ancient  MS.  referred  to, 
preserved  in  the  library  of  the  duke-bishop  of  Laon,  was 
brought  to  Ihe  notice  of  Duchesne,  who  printed  it  in  hjs 
collection  of  the  Norman  Historians,  published  at  Paris 
in  the  year  1619:  it  has  been  lately  republished  by  the 
Historical  Society  of  London,  under  the  careful  editorship 
of  Dr.  Sewell,  from  whose  improved  text  the  present  trans- 
lation has  been  made. 

Singularly  enough,  "  The  Acts  of  Stephen"  do  not  contain 
;a  single  date,  but,  aa  far  as  can  be  ascertained  (a  variety  of 
events  being  related  which  have  found  no  place  in  any 


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£mTOB&  fflffiFAr^lH  XIX 

<yd9ec  history),  tiie  order  ofi  tiaii»  is  duly  preserved*  The 
numeixientd  of  Slsspb^a,  who  was  m  incessant  action  through- 
^nthis^  stormy  reign,  ave  described  with  a  minuteness  which 
shows  liiat  tbe.  author  was  present  at  the  scenes  he  depicts. 
Many  of  them  hiy  in  the  west  of  England,  and  in  Bou^ 
Wkles,  where  the  Eari  of  Gloucester,  tlie  chief  supporter 
i£  &&  cause'  of  the  empress,  had  great  possessions,  and 
BQRioh  ii^uence  in  ri^t  of  his  wife,  and  of  his  mother, 
who  was  daughter  of  a  prince  of  that  country.  But  the 
enleeinises  of  (^her  individual  actors  in  those  turbulent 
times  fill  a  large  portion  of  the  author's  pages,  and  these 
efHsodes  form  a  very  interesting  part  of  the  narrative. 
They  enahle  us  to  realize  the  state  of  society,  when  e^ery 
defensible  positioa  was  occupied  by  a  staroag  castle,  there 
being  no  safety  outside  the  walls,  and  when  eveiy  man's 
hand  was  against  his  neighbour.  In  these  scenes,  the 
high-bom  baron,  and  the  ruffianly  freebooter,  alike  living 
b^  fraud  and  violeaoce,  are  prominent  figures,  while  licentious . 
men-at-arms,  and  Flemish  and'  Norman  mercenaries,  whose 
wages  were  rapine,  follow  in  their  train ;  and  gi'oups  of 
affinghied  and  plundered  citizens,  and  impoverished  eccle- 
siastics,, lend  it  horrors.  Indeed,  as  Dr.  Sewell  remarks, 
the.  whole  narrative  "  is  one  stirring  series  of  events  of 
personal  and  individual  int^est,  and,  in  this  respect,  it 
partakes  much  more  of  the  character  of  a  romance  than 
of  a  history.  We  are  transported  at  once  into  the  camp 
of  Stephen  and  his  barons ;  we  are  present  at  his  coun- 
cfls ;  we  are  hurried  forward  in  the  night  march ;  we  lurk  in 
the  ambuscade;  we  take  part  in.the  storming  of  castles  and 
<aties.  Now  we  stand  in  the  wild  momsses  of  the  isle  of 
Ely;  at  another  time  we  reconnoitre  the  fortifications  of 
Bristol ;  from  the  hard -fought  field  of  Lincoln  we  are  carried 
to  the  walls  of  Oxford ;  from  the  dungeon  of  the  captive 
king  we  hasten  to  witness  the  escape  of  the  empress,  during 
all  file  severities  of  a  December  night" 

History  presented  in  this  attractive  garb,  leaves  on  the 
mind  a  far  more  durable  impression  than  is  made  by  the 
gBneralizations  of  modem  writers,  too  many  of  whom 
Sfpoar  to  have  been  very  superficially  acquainted  with 
the  fflithorities  whence  they  profess  to  derive  theu*  infoi 

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XX  EDITOBS  PREFACE. 

mation,  while  most  of  them  have  written  under  some  par- 
ticular  hias,  political  or  religious,  which  has  given  a  colour- 
ing to  their  statements,  if  it  has  not  led  to  a  perversion 
of  facts.  Truth  must  be  sought  at  the  fountain  head,  and 
happily  for  those  who  desire  to  form  an  independent  judg- 
ment on  the  earlier  periods  of  our  nationsd  history,  the 
contemporaneous  chronicles  which  not  long  since  were 
confined  to  the  libraries  of  the  opulent,  and  sealed  up 
in  the  obscinity  of  a  dead  language,  are  now  brought 
within  the  reach,  and  opened  to  the  perusal  of  the  general 
reader. 

In  the  present  volimae,  the  transactions  of  King  Ste- 
phen's reign  will  be  found  recorded  by  two  different  au- 
thors. They  should  be  read  in  connection  with  William 
of  Malmesbury's  "  Modem  History,"  which  embraces  the 
same  period.  "  Taken  together,"  as  Dr.  Sewell  observes, 
**  they  constitute  a  valuable  body  of  history.  They  re- 
^  ciprocally  develope  the  politics  of  contending  parties ; 
they  serve  as  guides  whereby  to  airive  at  the  probable 
springs  of  action ;  they  supply  mutual  defects  of  informa- 
tion, they  may  serve  to  correct  mutual  errors."  In  com- 
paring Henry  of  Huntingdon's  eighth  Book  with  the  "  Acts 
of  King  Stephen,"  we  have  the  advantage  of  considering 
the  history  of  the  times  from  opposite  points  of  view,  Hun- 
tingdon being  warmly  attached  to  the  family  of  Heniy  I., 
while  our  anonymous  author  was  a  pai'tisan  of  Stephen. 
But  it  is  satisfactory  to  find  how  little  their  personal  feeling 
was  allowed  to  influence  their  statements  of  facts,  or  their 
estimates  of  character.  Himtingdon  does  full  justice  to 
^  the  bravery  of  Stephen,  particularly  at  the  battle  of  Lincoln, 
of  which  he  has  given  so  spirited  a  description ;  while  he 
seldom  takes  an  opportunity  of  charging  the  king  with 
those  repeated  breaches  of  faith,  which  were  the  worst 
stain  on  his  character,  and  which  the  anonymous  author 
freely  admits,  with  the  palliation  tliat  he  was  influenced  by 
evil  counsels.  Both  very  much  agree  in  their  observations 
on  the  arrest  of  the  bishops,  which,  though  it  might  be 
justified  by  pohtical  expediency,  was  one  of  Stephen's  most 
tyrannical  acts.  But,|,while  Huntingdon  remarks  that  this 
prepared  the  way  for  his  eventual  iiiin,  which  it  probably 


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EDITOBS   PBEFACE.  XXI 

did,  by  alienating  the  powerful  clergy  from  his  cause,  the 
anonymous  author  considers  that  he  expiated  his  crime  by 
the  restoration  of  the  bishops'  confiscated  property,  and  a 
penance  which  was  probably  imknown  to  the  other  histo- 
rian. It  may  be  observed,  in  passing,  that  neither  has  done 
justice  to  the  noblest  character  of  the  age,  Robert,  earl  of 
Gloucester,  the  natural  son  of  Henry  I.  They  have  not 
failed  to  describe  his  miUtary  achievements,  which  were 
not  unrivalled  at  such  a  period ;  to  appreciate  his  higher 
merits  of  disinterestedness,  firmness,  and  moderation,  we 
must  have  recourse  to  liie  pages  of  his  admirable  biogra- 
pher, William  of  Mahnesbuiy. 

Notwithstanding  this  general  agreement  of  oiu-  two  au- 
thor, there  is  one  part  of  their  narrative  in  which  they  are 
found  at  entire  variance ;  and  as  it  brings  to  notice  a  trait  of 
some  importance  towards  forming  an  estimate  of  Stephen's 
character,  and  is  also  connected  with  the  early  career  of  one 
of  the  greatest  and  wisest  of  our  English  kings,  the  subject 
may  be  -worth  a  few  concluding  remarks.  Perhaps  no  part  of 
Huntingdon's  History  does  him  more  credit,  both  in  point 
of  style,  and  as  a  clear  and  succinct  narrative  of  events, 
than  his  account  of  the  expedition  in  which  Henry,  duke  of 
Normandy,  embarked,  to  enforce  his  rights  to  the  English 
crown.  The  historian  represents  the  yoimg  prince  as 
having  hazarded  a  landing  with  a  small  body  of  troops, 
depending  upon  the  justice  of  his  cause,  and  the  attach- 
ment of  a  large  part  of  the  suffering  nation ;  and  that,  im- 
patient of  delay,  he  shortly  afterwards  took  Malmesbuiy 
Castle  by  storm.  He  then,  we  are  told,  offered  battle  to 
Stephen,  who  had  hastened  to  its  relief;  but  the  king 
drawing  off  his  army,  the  duke  threw  succours  into  Wal- 
lingford  Castle,  and  then  having  laid  siege  to  the  neigh- 
bouring castle  of  Crawmarsh,  again  offered  battle  to  Ste- 
phen under  its  walls,  though  his  forces  were  far  inferior  to 
the  royal  army.  The  history  relates  that  the  barons,  on 
both  sides,  interfered  to  stop  the  further  effusion  of  blood, 
and  a  truce  was  agreed  upon,  which,  after  some  further  suc- 
cesses of  the  Duke  of  Normandy,  led  to  a  treaty  of  peace, 
by  which  his  right  of  succession  to  the  throne  was  solemnly 
guaranteed. 

Such  is  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  account  of  the  campaign 


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X3U1  EBISOSiS  gBianiMffff. 

^id  its  ^*esuhs.  Let  us  now  turn  to  that  ^ven  hj  liie 
anonymous  author  of  tbe  "Acts of  King  Stephen,"  It  xe- 
lat«8  that,  on  Henry  s  landing,  he  took  no  brilliant  enter- 
prise in  hand,  hut  wasted  his  time  in  sloth  and  negligence  ; 
that  he  ivas  repulsed  with  disgrace  from  Cricklede  and 
Bourton,  the  only  places  he  is  said  to  have  attacked ; 
and  that  his  army,  unnerived  aad  enfeebled  by  their  disas- 
ters, at  length  disbanded.  We  are  then  informed  that  the 
young  duke,  worn  out  with  shame  and  distress,  applied  cto 
his  mother,  the  iCountess  of  Anjou,  whose  -treasury  being 
ediausted,  she  had  no  means  of  supplying  his  pressing 
necessities.  He  also,  it  is  said,  had  recourse  to  his  uncle, 
the  EmtI  of'Glouoester — who,  according  to  all  otiiei'  accodmts,. 
died  before  his  nephew «  -eKpedition-^but  he,  we  are  told, 
was  too  fond  of  his  Money-bags,  and  chose  to  ireserve  them 
for  his  own  occasions.  In  this  dilemma  the  young  duke 
applied  Xo  King  Stephen,  his  cousin,  who  gencaroufily  sup- 
plied the  wants  of  his  ^greatest  enemy. 

This  noble  Irait  is  ;peri[Mfep6  not  incomsiBtent  with  Ste- 
phen's :gecieral  character,  bat,  to  say  nothkig  of  the  Ana- 
chronism respecting  the  Earl  of  Gloucester,  and  the 
improbability  of  the  conduct  attributed  -to  so  faithfiil  an 
adherent  to  the  cause  of  bis  sister  aoid  nephew,  the 
account  given  of  the  young  duke's  pusillanimity  -and 
negligence  is  .as  tmuch  at  TariasKce  with  the  personal  his- 
tory of  that  gallant  and  indefaittgable  prince,  afterwards 
Henry  11.^  as  it  is  with  Huntingdon's  account  of  these 
toansactions.  Nor  can  it  be  understood  how,  with  the 
umined  fortunes  here  4e6cribed,  Henry  was  shortly  after- 
wards able  to  establish  his  Tight  to  the  throne,  as  it  is^n 
undisputed  fact  that  he  did. 

Our  anonymous  author's  account  of  the  closing  scenes 
of  Stephen's  reign,  of  which  we  are  depiived  by  the  ra- 
vages of  time,  may  have  thi'own  some  li^t  on  the  in- 
consistency of  the  two  statements,  and  it  is  just  possil^ 
that  his  description  of  Hens-y's  failure  and  distress  may 
refer  to  some  previous  unsuccessful  enteiprise  of  the 
young  prince,  which  Henry  of  Huntingdon  and  all  the 
other  dironiclers  have  passed  over  in  silence.  But  this 
is  by  no  means  probable,  and  the  reasonable  conclu- 
sion appears  to    be,   that  ithe  pisfent  is  one  of  those 


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EDITORS   PREFACE.  XXIU 

not  uncommon  cases  in  which  ^Titers,  whose  general 
truth  and  honesty  cannot  he  questioned,  are  occasionally 
found  to  differ,  not  only  in  their  details  of  minute  circum- 
stances, but  in  theil*  narratives  of  facts  which  might  seem 
to  have  been  sufficiently  notorious. 

March  5,  1853. 


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HENEY    OF   HUNTINGDON'S   PEEFAOE. 


TO  ALEXANDER  BISHOP  OF  LINCOLN'. 

As  the  pursuit  of  learning  in  all  its  branches  affords,  ac-  ) 
cording  to  my  way  of  thinking,  the  sweetest  earthly  mitiga- 
tion of  trouble  and  consolation  in  grief,  so  I  consider  that 
precedence  must  be  assigned  to ,  History,  as  both  the  most 
delightful  of  studies  land  the  one  which  is  invested  with  the 
noblest  and  brightest  prerogatives.  Indeed,  there  is  nothing 
in  this  world  more  excellent  than  accm'ately  to  investigate 

'  Alexander  de  Blois  was  preferred  to  the  see  of  Lincoln  by  Henry  I.  a.d. 
1123,  on  the  recommendation  of  his  uncle  Roger^  bishop  of  Salisbury,  the 
king's  powerful  and  trusted  minister.  After  Henry's  death,  the  two  bishops 
were  suspected  of  secretly  favouring  the  cause  of  his  right  heirs  agninst  the 
usurper,  and  Stephen^  taking  umbrage  at  their  erecting  strong  castles  on  their 
estates,  caused  them  to  be  suddenly  arrested  and  severely  treated.  The 
bishops  were  thus  compelled  to  surrender  their  fortresses,  including  the 
stately  castle  of  Newark,  which  Bishop  Alexander  had  erected.  They 
severely  resented  this  harsh  treatment,  though  Bishop  Alexander  was  after- 
wards apparently  reconciled  to  Stephen's  government,  and  took  a  distin- 
guished part  in  public  afi^irs,  as  he  had  also  done  in  the  latter  part  of 
Henry's  reign.  His  biographers  state  that  he  was  justiciary  of  all  England 
and  Papal  Legate,  but  it  would  appear  that  what  Huntingdon  says  of  the 
uncle,  the  Bishop  of  Salisbury,  has  been  inadvertently  applied  to  the  nephew. 
Alexander  de  Blois  went  twice  to  Kome  where  he  displayed  so  much  muni- 
ficence, that  at  that  court  he  was  called  "  The  Magnificent."  He  also  visited 
his  friend  Pope  Eugenius  IX.  in  France  in  the  month  of  August,  1147,  and 
died  the  following  year,  of  a  fever  caught  during  his  journey  from  the  extra- 
ordinary heat  of  the  summer.  He  was  buried  in  the  cathedral  at  Lincoln, 
which  having  been  injured  or  destroyed  by  fire,  he  had  restored  to  more 
than  its  former  magnificence.  His  general  munificence  was  great,  and,  accord- 
ing to  the  usage  of  the  times,  the  episcopal  establishment  was  splendid  and 
sumptuous,  and  he  was  more  engaged  in  civil  affairs  than  befitted  his  eccle- 
siastical functions.  But  Henry  of  Huntingdon  informs  us  that  he  was  an 
excellent  bishop,  and  much  beloved  and  revered  by  his  clergy  and  people. 
See  his  character  drawn  by  our  historian,  pp.  284,  285,  and  316.  It  is  copied 
implicitly  by  B.oger  de  Hoveden.  That  the  bishop  did  not  neglect  the  culture 
of  literature  may  be  inferred  from  his  suggestions  to  our  author,  which  were 
the  basis  of  the  following  History. 


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XXVI  HENRY    OF   IIONTINGDON  S    PHEFACE. 

and  trace  out  the  course  of  worldly  aflfairs.  '  For  where  is 
exhibited  in  a  more  lively  manner  the  grandeur  of  heroic 
men,  the  wisdom  of  the  prudent,  the  uprightness  of  the 
just,  and  the  moderation  of  the  temperate,  than  in  the  series 
of  actions  which  history  records  ?  We  find  Horace  suggest- 
ing this,  when  speaking  in  praise  of  Homer's  story,  he 
says : — 

*'  Hit  works  th«  beantifal  and  Iwse  contain, — 
Of  vice  and  virtue  more  instructive  rules 
Tfaaa  alt  tke  nhet  sages  nf  the  schools.'' ' 

€rantor,mdeed,andChrysippus  composed  laboured  treatises 
on  moral  philo^phy,  while  Homer  unfolds,  as  it  were  in  a 
play  ^  thecharaeter  of  Agamemnon  formaganinmity,  of  Nestor 
for  prudence,  of  Menelaus  for  uprightness,  and  on  the 
other  hand  portrays  the  vastness  of  Ajax,  the  feebleness  of 
Priam,  the  wrath  of  Achilles,  and  the  fraud  of  Paris ;  setting 
forth  in  his  narrative  what  is  vh-tuous  and  what  is  profit- 
able, better  than  is  done*  in  the  disquisitions  of  philosK> 
phers. 

But  why  should  I  dwell  on  profane  literature  ?  See  how 
sacred  history  teaches  morals ;  while  it  attributes  faithful- 
ness to  Abralmm,  fortitude  to  Moses,  forbearance  to  Jacob, 
wisdom  to  Joseph ;  and  while,  on  the  contrary,  it  sets  forth 
ihe  injustice  of  Ahab,  the  weakness  of  Oziah,  the  reckless- 
ness of  Manasseh,  the  folly  of  Koboam.  O  God  of  mercy, 
what  an  effulgence  was  shed  on  humiUty,  when  holy  Moses, 
after  joining  with  his  brother  in  an  offering  of  sweet-smell- 
ing incense  to  God,  his  protector  and  avenger,  threw  him- 
self into  the  midst  of  a  terrible  danger^,  and  when  he  shed 
teai's  for  Miriam  \  who  spoke  scornfully  of  liim,  and  was 
ever  interceding  for  those  who  were  malignant  against  him ! 
How  brightly  shone  ^ae  light  of  humanity  when  David, 
assailed  and  grievously  tried  by  the  curses,  the  insults,  and 

'  Epistles,  Book  i.  Ep.  1. 

*  Two  of  the  MSS.  read  speculo,  instead  of  spectaculo.  The  version  would 
then  be  **  displays  as  in  a  mirror.'*  I  have  followed  the  reading  given  by 
Fetrie  as  well  as  by  Savile.  ^  Numb.  xvi.  46» 

'  The  MSS.  and  printed  editions  read  "  Maria,"  clearly  an  error  of  the 
transcribers;  see  Numb.  xiL  I?. 


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HENRY   OF  HUNTJNOD0N8   PREP2LeB.  XKVH 

iher^vl  reproaches  of  ShimeiS  worrld  not  allow  him-to  be 
injured,  though  he  himself  was  armed,  and  surrounded  by 
his  followers  in  arms,  while  Shimei  was  alone  and  defence- 
less ;  and  afterwards,  when:  David  was  triumphantly  restored 
to  his  throne,  he  would  not  suffer  punishment  to  be  inflicted 
on  his  reviler.  So,  also,  in  the  annals  of  all  people,  which 
indeed  display  the  providence  of  God,  clemency,  munifi- 
cence, honesty,  circumspection,  and  the  like,  with  their 
opposites,  not  only  provoke-  believers  to  what  is  good,  and 
<ieter  them  from  evil,  but  ev«n  attract  worldly  men  to  good- 
ness, and  arm  them  against  wickedness. 

History  brings  the  past  to  the  view,  as  if  it  were  present, 
And  enables  us  to  judge  of  the  future  by  picturing  to  our- 
selves the  past.  Besides,  the  knowledge  o€  former  events 
has  this  further  pre-eminence,  that  it  forms  a  main  distinc- 
tion between  brutes  and  rational  creatures.  For  brutes, 
whether  they  be  men  or  beasts,  neither  know,  nor  wish  to 
know,  whence  tliey  com«,  nor  their  own  origin,  nor  the 
annals  and  revolutions  of  the  country  they  inhabit.  Of  the 
two,  I  consider  men  in  this  brutal  state  to  be  the  worst, 
because  what  is  natural  in  ther  case  of  beasts,  is  the  lot  of 
men  from  their  own  want  of  sense ;  and  what  beasts  could 
not  acquire  if  they  would,  such  men  will  not  though  they 
could.  But  enough  of  these,  whose  life  and  death  are 
alike  consigned  to  everlasting  oblivion. 

With  such  reflections,  and  in  obedience  to  yoin*  com- 
mands, most  excellent  prelate,  I  have  undertaken  to  arrange 
in  order  the  antiquities  and  history  of  this  kingdom  and 
nation,  of  which  you  are  the  most  distinguished  ornament. 
At  your  suggestion,  also,  I  have  followed,  as  far  as  possible, 
the  Ecclesiastical  History  of  the  venerable  Bede,  making 
extracts,  also,  from  other  authors,  with  compilations  from 
the  chronicles  preserved  in  antient  libraries.  Thus,  I  have 
brought  down  the  course  of  past  events  to  times  within 
our  own  knowledge  and  observation.  The  attentive  reader 
will  learn  in  this  work  both  what  he  ought  to  imitate,  and 
what  he  ought  to  eschew ;  and  if  he  becomes  the  better  for 
this  imitation  and  this  avoidance,  that  is  the  fruit  of  my 
labours  which  I  most  desire ;  and,  in  truth,  the  direct  path 
of  history  frequently  leads  to  moral  improvement.     But,  as 

*  1  Kings  ii.  8. 


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XXVIU  HENRY   OF  HUNTINGDON  S   PHEFACE. 

we  undertake  nothing  without  imploring  divine  assistance, 
/  let  us  commence  by  invoking  God's  holy  name : — 

Prostrate  beneath  the  terrors  of  thy  frown. 
Some,  till  they  fill  their  cup  of  crime,  remain, 
Some,  with  its  bitter  dregs,  thy  vengeance  drain. 
The  thoughts  of  kings  and  nations  fluctnate, 
Thou,  in  thy  wisdom,  rulest  all  their  state, 
Inflicting  evil,  as  the  prophet  sings  *, 
And  wafting  blessings  upon  angels*  wings, 
When  such  the  pleasure  of  thy  righteous  will ; 
Thou  self-existent,  dread  unchangeable. 
From  whom,  by  whom,  and  in  whom  all  things  are ! 
Creatob,  Lord  and  shepherd,  king  of  kings, 
Beginning,  source,  and  growth,  and  end  of  things. 
Fountain  of  light,  whence  heavenly  radiance  flows. 
My  work  inspire,  and  guide  it  to  its  close ; 
My  work,  which  tells  the  marvels  of  thy  hand. 
Thyself  our  Father,  in  our  father  s  land. 
Thou,  by  whose  counsels  and  whose  mighty  aid. 
Great  in  thy  counsels,  secret  or  display'd, 
Eealms  are  exalted,  or  again  brought  down. 

And  thou,  exalted  prelate,  Bngland's  pride, 

Our  country's  father,  and  our  monarch's  guide, 

What  I  have  well  performed,  in  grace  approve. 

Where  I  have  erred,  correct  me  in  thy  love. 

See  here  how  nations  prosper,  realms  decay. 

And  draw  the  moral  for  the  future  day.  ' 

Mark,  holy  father,  how  their  power  arose. 

Their  wealth,  their  fame,  their  triumphs  o'er  their  foes, 

Mark  how  in  nothing  all  such  glories  close. 

*  Tsa.  xiv.  7. 


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HENET  OF  HUNTINGDOFS 

HISTORY    OF    THE    ENGLISH. 


BOOK  1.1 


Bbttain  is  truly  an  island  of  the  utmost  fertility,  abounding 
in  com  and  firuit  trees,  which  are  nourished  by  perenniid 
streams.  It  is  diversified  by  woods,  sheltering  birds  and 
beasts  of  chace,  affording  merry  sport  to  the  hunter.  Wild 
fowl  of  all  sorts  are  exceedingly  plentiful,  both  those  which 
are  peculiar  to  the  land  and  those  which  frequent  the 
water,  whether  the  rivers  or  the  seaw  Moreover,  tiie  island 
is  remarkably  adapted  for  feeding  cattle  and  beasts  of  bm*- 
then ;  insomuch  tiiat  Solinus  remarks  that  *'  in  some  parts 
of  Britain  the  herbage  of  the  meadows  is  so  luxuriant  that 
unless  the  cattle  are  shifted  to  poorer  pasture  there  is  risk 
of  their  suffering  from  surfeit."  The  never-failing  springs 
feed  rivers  abounding  in  fish.  Salmon  and  eels,  especially, 
are  very  plentiful.  Herrings  are  taken  on  the  coasts,  as 
well  as  oysters  and  other  kinds  of  shell-fish.  Among  these 
are  the  muscles,  which  produce  beautiful  pearls,  of  a  great 

'  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  in  this  First  Book,  after  giving  a  general  descrip- 
tion of  Britain,  and  some  slight  account^  mostly  fabulous^  of  its  early  history, 
embraces  the  period  from  the  invasion  of  Julius  Caesar  to  the  final  abandon- 
ment of  the  province  by  the  Eomans  in  the  tiqie  of  Theodosius  II.  But 
this  Book  is  rather  an  epitome  of  the  lives  and  characters  of  the  Roman  em- 
perors, than  a  narrative  of  events  in  British,  or  Boman-British  history.  His 
principal  authorities  for  the  former  are  Eutropius,  and  the  Epitome  of  Aure- 
lius  Victor ;  but  Bede's  Ecclesiastical  History  furnishes  the  staple  of  his  nar- 
rative ;  and  he  also  draws  largely  from  the  history  of  the  Britons  attributed 
te  N^jmius — by  some  to  Gildas ;  and  he  has  also  interwoven  in  his  history 
information  derived  from  other  sources  which  cannot  now  be  traced. 

B 


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2  HENRY  OP  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  I. 

variety  of  colours,  red,  purple,  violet,  and  emerald ;  princi- 
pally, however,  white.  Nor  are  the  cockles  wanting  from 
which  a  scarlet  dye  is  made,  whose  exquisite  tint  does  not 
fade  by  exposure  either  to  the  sim  or  rain ;  the  older  it  is 
the  brighter  the  colour  becomes.  Dolphins  and  whales  are 
also  caught,  as  Juvenal  saya^  >-^ 

"  Far  as  the  giant  whalei  of  Britain's  sea 
Bxoecd  the  ^Ifibin." 

Britain  is  also  rich  in  metallic  veins  of  iron,  tin,  and  lead. 
Some  of  these  contain  silver  also,  though  not  so  commonly; 
silver,  however,  is  received  from  the  neighbouring  parts  of 
Germany,  with  which  an  extensive  commerce  is  carried  on 
by  the  Rhine  in  the  abundant  produce  of  fish  and  meat,  as 
well  as  of  fine  wool  and  fat  cattle  which  Britain  supplies, 
so  that  money  appears  to  be  more  plentiful  there  ihai  in 
Germany  itself,  and  all  the  coins  introduced  ioto  Britain  by 
this  traffic  are  of  pure  silver.  Britain,  also,  fomishes  large 
quantities  of  very  excellent  jet,  of  a  black  aoid  brilliaDt  hue. 
Eenda*ed  spaxMing  by  fire,  it  drives  away  serpents ;  when 
it  becomes  heated  by  friction  substances  adhere  to  it,  as 
they  do  to  ambar.  The  island  contains  both  salt^i^rings 
and  hot-springs,  tibe  streams  from  which  SYq)ply  baths 
aceommodatea  to  the  8q[>arate  use  of  persons  of  every  age 
and  of  both  sexes.  "For  water,"  as  St  Basil  observes^ 
"  acquires  the  quality  of  heat  by  running  over  certain  me- 
tals, so  that  not  only  it  becomes  warm,  but  even  scalding 
hot." 

This  celebrated  island,  formerly  called  Albion,  afterwards 
Britain,  and  now  Skigland,  extends  between  the  ncfrih  and 
the  west  800  miles  in  length  and  200  in  breadtia,  except 
where  the  jutting  out  of  some  of  its  bolder  promontories 
expands  its  breadth.  Including  these,  its  complete  circuit 
reaches  4875  miles*.  Britain  has  Germany  and  Denmark 
on  the  east,  Ireland  on  the  west,  and  Belgic-Gaul  on  the 
south.  The  first  plafce  which  presents  itself  to  tliose  who 
cross  the  sea  from  the  coast  of  Gaul  is  called  Butubi-portus^ 

»  Sat  X.  T.  14. 

^  Bede,  from  whose  history  this  deseripfioii  of  Britain  is  partially  hat' 
rowed,  makes  the  dreait  of  the  island  8675  miles,  S«e  vol  i  of  this 
series,  p.  4, 


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BOOK  1.]  DBSCSimOlI  OF  BBIXIIH.  S 

a  tity  whose  nune  ihe  Engtii^  h«ve  eomq>ted  into  Bqpta- 
oeet^^.  The  di&rtaiice  across  the  sea  ^com  Gesfiorielun^  a 
town  helangiDg  to  ihe  tribe  of  the  Moriia,  and  Ihe  nearest 
point  firom  which  the  passage  can  be  made  is  60  miles,  or, 
acoordiBg  to  seme  writers,  450  fiirlongs.  Se^ie-Gaul  de- 
rived its  name  from  Beluaei,  fcmnerlj  a  flonri^ing  city  of 
that  part  of  CraoL  It  appears  that  the  province  is  now 
divided  into  two  parts,  one  of  which  is  called  Ponthicn, 
sgkd  the  other,  where  the  Normans,  a  powerful  and  foreign 
race,  are  settled,  Normandy.  To  the  north  of  Britain^ 
whfise  it  is  exposed  to  the  open  and  bonndless  ocean,  lie 
the  Orkney  Isknds,  the  farthest  of  which  is  called  Thiile% 
as  it  is  said : — 

f*  Bv'n  ntmost  Thtile  liall  thy  pow*r  obey.*** 

Britain  n,  indeed,  sui'rotiaded  by  a  mmtber  of  islands^ 
threei  of  which  are  greater  than  the  Test  first,  we  have  the 
Orkneys,  fdready  mentioned ;  next,  tiie  Isle  of  Man,  which 
lies  in  the  mid^  of  the  sea,  between  Biitain  and  Jh'dand  ; 
and  third,  the  Isle  oi  Wicht,  which  is  situated  to  the  south, 
ever  i^ainst  Hie  Normans  and  the  Armoiicatis,  who  aie  now 
edkd  Bretons.  Tkaa  it  was  said  in  an  a»»«oit  discourse, 
^vhere  it  treated  of  judges  and  rulers,  ''He  shall  judge 
Britain  with  her  tiiree  iskuods."  Britain  was  formerly 
famous  for  ^  cities,  wliich,  as  well  as  innnmeraible  eastles» 
were  vrell  fortified  with  walk  and  towers,  and  with  gaiea 
seeored  by  strong  lodes.  The  names  of  these  cities  in 
^e  British  kmgnage  were  Kair-Ebraiic,  York;  £air-Chent» 
Canterbmy  ;  Kair-^^kxrangon,  Worcester ;  Sair-Lund^ie, 
London;  E^-Legion,  Leicester;  Eair-GcUon,  Colchester; 
Kair-Okm,  Gloucester;  £aur-Cei,  Chichester;  Kair*Bristou« 
[Bristol;]  Xair-Ceri,  Cirencester;  Eaix^Ouent,  Winchester ; 
Kair-Grant,   Grantchester,  now    called  Cambridge ;    and 

a  -*    • 


^  The  aaeicBis  ttppeu  to  lunre  had  no  tettaan  idea  of  the  situation  of 
what  thej  called  Thxie,  The  nane  leema  to  hare  been  yarioualy  attributed 
to  the  fiurdiest  ishoid  in  the  North  Sea,  vnknown  with  any  certainty  firom 
tile  impecfectgeegraphtcal  knowledge  of  thoae  legions.  Some  modem  writen 
hsve  djaeorered  Tbale  in  TheUe-marken,  one  of  the  western  districts  of 
Jlerway. 

*  Qwrg.  1.  80. 

B  $3 


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4  HENBY  OF  HUNTINGDOK.  [BOOK  I. 

Kair-Lion,  which  we  call  Carlisle.  Kair-Dauri  is  Dor- 
chester; IQdr-Dorm,  Dormchester,  a  town  on  the  river 
Nen,  in  Huntingdonshire,  which  is  entirely  destroyed; 
Kair-Loitchoit  is  Lincoln;  Kair-Merdin  still  retains  its 
former  name  [Carmarthen].  There  were  also  Kair-Guor- 
con,  Kair-Cucerat,  Kair-Guortigem,  Kair-Umac,  Kair-Cele- 
mion,  Kair-Meguaid,  Kair-Licelid ;  Kair-Peris,  that  is, 
Porchester ;  and  Kair-Legion,  which  was  the  seat  of  an  arch- 
bishop in  the  time  of  the  Britons,  but  now  there  are  only 
the  remains  of  its  walls  on  the  bank  of  the  river  Usk,  not 
far  from  its  confluence  with  the  Severn  ^  Besides  these 
there  were  Kair-Draiton,  Kair-Mercipit,  and  Kair-Segent,  on 
the  Thames,  not  far  from  Beading,  and  which  the  Saxons 
called  Silchester.  These  were  the  names  of  the  cities  in 
the  times  of  the  Romans  and  Britons-. 

Since  the  beginning  of  history  there  have  been  five  in- 
flictions of  the  Divine  wrath  on  the  people  of  Britain ;  the 
visitations  of  Providence  falling  on  the  faithful,  as  well 
as  its  judgments  on  unbelievers.  The  first  was  by  the 
Romans,  who  conquered  Britain,  but  after  a  time  withdrew 
from  the  island.  The  second  was  by  the  Scots  and  Picts, 
who  grievously  harassed  it  by  hostile  inroads,  but  never  suc- 
ceeded in  gaining  permanent  possession.  The  third  was 
by  the  Angles,  who  completely  subjugated  and  occupied  the 
country.  The  fourth  was  by  the  Danes,  who  established 
themselves  on  the  soil  by  successftd  wars,  but  afterwards 
disappeared  and  were  lost.  The  fifth  was  by  the  Normans, 
who  conquered  all  Britain,  and  still  hold  the  EngUsh  in 
subjection.  When  the  Saxons  had  subjugated  the  country 
they  divided  it  into  seven  kingdoms,  to  which  they  gave 
names  of  their  own  selection.  Their  first  kingdom  was 
called  Kent ;  2,  Sussex,  in  which  Chichester  is  situated ; 

*  There  are  still  considerable  remains  of  the  walls  of  Carlcon,  probably 
much  in  the  same  state  as  they  were  in  the  time  of  our  Archdeacon  of  Hon- 
tingdon.  The  discovery  of  some  tesselated  pavements  have  authenticated 
its  claims  to  having  been  a  Roman  station — ^the  Isca  Silurum  of  the  second 
Augustan  legion ;  whence  its  Roman-British  name — the  city  of  the  legion. 

^  Henry  of  Huntingdon  has  taken  this  catalogue  of  ancient  British  cities, 
for  the  most  part,  from  Nennius,  omitting  three — Kair-Manch-guid,  Eair- 
Pensavelcoyt,  and  Eair-Guentwig ;  but  adding  to  the  list  of  Nennius^  Eair- 
Glou,  Eair-Oeri,  Eair-Merdin,  Eair-Dorm,  and  Eair-Cei.  The  three  first 
of  these  are  found  also  in  Mark  the  Anchorite. 


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BOOK   I.]  THE  HEFTABCHY.  fi 

3,  Wessex,  of  which  the  capital  was  Wilton,  now  given  to 
the  monks :  "V^inchester,  SaJisbury,  and  several  other  cities 
were  in  this  kingdom ;  4,  Essex,  which  did  not  long  remain 
independent,  but  became  subject  to  other  kingdoms;  6, 
East  Anglia,  which  contained  the  counties  of  Norfolk  and 
Suffolk ;  6,  Mercia,  in  which  was  Lincoln  and  several  other 
cities;  7,  Northimibria,  of  which  the  capital  was  York. 
Afterwards,  when  the  kings  of  Wessex  acquired  the  ascen- 
dancy over  the  rest,  and  established  a  monarchy  throughout 
the  island,  they  divided  it  into  37  coimties,  which,  though 
their  situations  and  names  are  well-known  to  those  who 
inhabit  them,  it  may  be  worth  the  trouble  to  describe.  For 
it  may  chance,  perhaps,  that  as  the  names  of  the  cities  we 
have  just  enumerated,  famous  as  they  once  were,  are  now 
considered  barbarous  and  turned  into  derision,  so  also,  in 
the  lapse  of  time,  those  which  are  now  very  well-known 
may  pass  out  of  memory  and  become  the  subject  of  doubt 
Kent,  then,  is  the  first  coimty,  in  which  are  the  sees  of  the 
Archbishop  of  Canterbury  and  the  Bishop  of  Kochester. 
The  second  is  Sussex,  in  which  is  the  bishopric  of  Chi- 
chester. The  third  is  Surry.  The  fourth  is  Hampshire, 
in  which  is  the  see  of  Winchester.  The  fifth  is  Berkshire. 
The  sixth  is  Wiltshire,  in  which  is  the  bishopric  of  Salis- 
bury. The  seventh  is  Dorset  The  eighth  is  Somerset  in 
which  is  the  bishopric  of  Bath,  or  Acemancester.  The 
ninth  is  Devonshire,  in  which  is  the  see  of  Exeter.  The 
tenth,  Cornwall ;  the  eleventh,  Essex ;  the  twelfth,  Middle- 
sex, in  which  is  the  see  of  London.  The  thirteenth,  Suf- 
folk; the  fourteenth,  Norfolk,  in  which  is  the  see  of 
Norwich.  The  fifteenth  is  Cambridgeshire,  in  which  is  the 
see  of  Ely.  The  sixteenth  is  Lincolnshire,  of  which  the 
capital  city  is  Lincoln,  and  to  which  are  subject  seven 
other  counties,  viz.,  Leicester,  Hampton,  Himtingdon. 
Hertford,  Bedford,  Buckingham,  and  Oxford ;  for  the  great 
bishopric  of  Lincoln  extends  fi:om  the  Humber  to  the 
Thames.  The  twenty-fourth  is  Gloucestershire ;  the  twenty- 
fifth  is  Worcestershire,  in  which  is  the  see  of  Worcester. 
The  twenty-sixth  is  Herefordshire,  in  which  is  the  see  of 
Hereford.  The  twenty-seventh  is  Salop ;  the  twenty-eighth, 
Cheshire,  in  which  is  the  bishopric  of  Chester^ ;  the  twenty- 

'  The  feat  o  tbis  bishopric,  which  Peter  transferred  to  Chester,  about  ▲.!>. 
1075>  was  afterwards  restored  to  Litchfield. 


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6  HENET  OF  HtnmNGDON.  [BOOK  i. 

mnth  is  Warwick ;  the  ihirtiedi,  Stafford.  After  the  tibir- 
tieth,  the  first  is  Derby ;  the  seooikl,  Nottingham  ;  the 
^imd,  Yorkshh^,  in  -which  is  the  arehbisfaoprie  of  Yoric. 
The  fourtii  is  Northumbeiiand,  over  whidi  presides  the 
Bishop  of  Durham.  The  fifth  is  that  district  in  which  ihe 
new^  bish(^ric  of  Carlisle  is  established.  Comities  are 
called,  in  English,  ^lires.  At  the  present  time,  therefore, 
England  can  boast  of  having  seventeen  bishoprics ;  but  it 
oontams  many  more  cities  than  such  as  are  bish<^'  sees« 
8udi  as  Gloucester,  Leicester,  Oxford,  and  many  others 
which  have  no  bishops.  In  the  western  part  of  the  isknd, 
which  is  called  Wales,  there  »re  three  bishoprics :  one  at 
Bt.  Bavid*s,  another  at  Bangor,  and  the  tiiird  at  Glamor- 
gan^ ;  but  these  are  sees  witiKmt  ciUes,  by  reason  of  the 
desolation  of  Wales,  the  only  part  of  the  island  retained  by 
the  Britons  after  the  Saxon  conquest.  In  our  times  the 
Bishop  of  St  David's  receives  fix)m  the  Pope  the  paUium, 
which  formeriy  bdonged  to  Carleon,  but  vduch  it  has  now 
lost 

The  cities  whidi  hove  been  enumeisited  have  for  their 
^tes  the  pleasant  and  fertile  banks  of  rivers.  Two  of  these 
rivers  are  more  celebrated  than  the  rest,  the  Thames  and 
the  Severn ;  the  two  arms,  as  it  were,  of  Britain,  by  "whidi 
it  draws  to  itself  the  produce  of  other  cotmtries,  and  exports 
its  own.  But  it  is  peculiar  to  ihe  English  that,  being  m-och 
tiddicted  to  foreign  travel,  they  are  remaikable  for  their 
superior  style  of  dress  and  living,  by  vdiidi  they  are  easily 
distinguished  from  other  nations.  Since,  then,  Britain 
abounds  in  so  many  tMngs  (even  vineyards  floinish  in  it, 
though  they  are  not  conmaon),  those  who  covet  its  wealth 
must  bring  their  own  in  exchange  for  vdiat  they  receive.  In 
whose  praise  scHne  one  thus  vrrote : — 

"  C»ni,  milk,  «id  honey,  fuller  ^ed  their  stores 
On  Britain's  plains,  than  over  all  the  isles 
Where  foaming  ocean  washes  sea-girt  shores." 

And  a  little  afterwards : — 

^  OHie  see  of  CarHsle,  which  was  foniided  by  Henry  I.  in  1133,  in  Henry 
of  Huntingdon's  own  time,  indaded  Cumberland,  Westmorland,  and  part  of 
Northnmberland. 

'  Tihmdnff,  in  QlanittigBDahlre^  was  the  seat  of  this  bishopric  fiem  the 
earliest  times. 


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BOOK  I.]     '  CUaUTB  OF  EKGLAlffD*  7 

"  Lfsdon  f<»r  tkips,  ami  Winchester  for  wine, 
H«i!e£H>4  for  herds,  Worcester  for  com  renown'd ; 
Bath  for  its  waters,  Salisbiuy  for  the  chase; 
For  fishes,  Canterbury ;  Toric  for  its  woods ;     . 
Exeter  beasts  its  rich  metallie  ores. 
JNanow  die  sea  'tween  Chidiester  md  Fcaace, 
While  Dorthem  Durham  fronts  the  surging  waveg 
On  which  old  Norway  launched  her  conq'ring  sons. 
Ib  grace  proud  Lincoln's  children  foremost  stand^ 
Ely's  high  tow'rs  the  wide  champaign  command, 
Beehester  rises  bright  on  Medway's  winding  strand." 

Nor  must  it  be  omitted  that  iSne  climate  of  Britain  is  very 
temperate,  and  healthy  to  its  inhabitants ;  for  since  it  lies 
between  the  nwrth  and  the  west,  the  cold  of  the  north  is 
tempered  by  the  influence  of  the  sun  in  its  course  westward. 
The  malady  called  St  Anthony's  Fire  never  afflicts  the 
natives,  whik  diseased  persons  brought  over  from  Gaul 
obtain  a  cure.  The  island  lies  so  near  the  North  Pole,  the 
ni^ts  are  so  light  in  summer  that  at  midnight  it  is  often 
doubtful  to  the  beholders  whether  the  evening  twilight  still 
remains,  or  daybreak  has  already  commenced,  so  short  is 
the  period  befc^e  the  sim's  retmn  from  having  passed  un- 
daneath  the  northern  re^ons  to  appear  again  in  the  east. 
For  this  reason  the  da3rs  are  of  great  length  in  summer,  as, 
on  the  contrary,  ihe  nights  are  in  winter,  the  days  and 
ni^ts  during  the  alternate  seasons  being  each  only  six 
hours  long;  while  in  Armenia,  Macedonia,  and  Italy,  the 
longest  day  or  ni^t  is  of  fifteen  hours,  the  shortest  of 
nine. 

There  are  four  things  in  England  which  are  very  remark- 
able. One  is  that  tlie  winds  issue  with  such  great  violence 
from  certain  caverns  in  a  mountain  called  the  Peak^,  that 
it  ejects  matters  thrown  into  them,  and  whirling  them  about 
in  the  air  carries  them  to  a  great  distance.  The  second  is 
at  Stonehenge,  where  stones  of  extraordinary  dimensions 
are  raised  as  columns,  and  others  are  fixed  above,  like  lin- 
tels of  immense  portals  ;  and  no  one  has  been  able  to  dis- 
cover by  what  mechanism  such  vast  masses  of  stone  were 
^leyateo,  nor  for  what  purpose  they  were  designed.     The 

*  In  Derbyshire. 


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8  HENEY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  Z. 

third  is  at  Chedder-hole^,  where  there  is  a  cavern  which 
many  persons  have  entered,  and  have  traversed  a  great 
distance  under  groimd,  crossing  subterraneous  streams, 
without  finding  any  end  of  the  cavern.  The  foiu'th  wonder 
is  this,  that  in  sorhe  parts  of  the  country  the  rain  is  seen  to 
gather  about  the  tops  of  the  hills,  and  forthwith  to  fall  on 
file  plains. 

So  important  was  the  safety  of  Britain  to  its  loyal  people 
that,  imder  royal  authority,  they  constructed  four  great 
highways  fi:om  one  end  of  the  island  to  the  other,  as  mili- 
tary roads,  by  which  they  might  meet  any  hostile  invasion. 
The  first  runs  fi'om  west  to  east,  and  is  called  Ichenild. 
The  second  runs  fi-om  south  to  north,  and  is  called  Er- 
ninge  Strate^.  The  third  crosses  the  island  firom  Dover  to 
Chester,  in  a  direction  from  south-east  to  north-west,  and  is 
called  Watling  Street  The  fourth,  which  is  longer  than 
the  others,  commences  in  Caithness,  and  terminates  in  Tot- 
ness,  extending  fi:om  the  borders  of  Cornwall  to  the  extre- 
mity of  Scotland ;  this  road  runs  diagonally  from  south- 
west to  north-east,  passing  by  Lincoln,  and  is  called  the 
Foss-way.  These  are  the  four  principal  highways  of  Britain, 
which  are  noble  and  useful  works,  founded  by  the  edicts  of 
kings,  and  maintained  by  venerated  laws. 

Five  languages  are  spoken  in  Britain ;  those  of  the  Bri- 
tons, the  Angles,  the  Scots,  the  Picts,  and  the  Eomans. 
Of  these  the  Latin  has,  by  the  study  of  the  Holy  Scriptures, 
become  common  to  all.    The  Picts  ^,  however,  have  entirely 

'  Wookey  Hole,  in  Cheddar  ClifiSs,  under  the  Mendip  Hills^  in  Somerset- 
shire. 

*  Or  Ermeninge  Street 

3  On  the  origin  of  the  Picts  see  toI.  i.  of  this  series,  p.  5.  It  is  to  be 
observed,  that  Henry  of  Huntingdon  does  not  notice  the  Norsk  or  Danish 
among  the  languages  commonly  spoken  in  Britain,  though  at  least  one-third 
of  England  was  colonized  by  Norwegians  and  Danes,  and  their  language,  a 
cognate  dialect,  indeed,  of  the  Anglo-Saxon,  has  left  traces  of  its  distinct  cha- 
racter, in  some  districts,  even  to  the  present  day,  which  must  have  been  still 
more  rifs  in  the  times  of  the  Archdeacon.  See  Worsaae's  "  Danes  in  Ens- 
land,"  and  an  Essay  on  the  same  subject  in  the  Jubilee  Edition  of  King  Al- 
fred's works.  Henry  of  Huntingdon  implicitly  copies  Bede,  without  any 
reference  to  the  further  element  which  was  added  to  the  languages  spoken  in 
Britain  after  the  time  of  his  author. 


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BOOK  I.J  ORIGIN   OF  THE   BEITONS.  9 

disappeared,  and  their  language  is  extinct,  so  that  the  ac- 
counts given  of  this  people  by  ancient  writers  seem  almost 
fabulous.  "\^Tio  will  not  mark  the  difference  between  the 
devotion  to  heavenly  and  the  pursuit  of  earthly  things, 
when  he  reflects  that  not  only  the  kings  and  chiefe,  but  &e 
whole  race  of  this  heathen  people  have  utterly  perished; 
and  that  all  memory  of  them,  and,  what  is  more  wonderful, 
their  very  langus^e,  the  gift  of  God  in  the  origin  of  their 
nation,  is  quite  lost. 

Let  what  we  have  thus  far  written,  though  of  many  things 
we  have  treated  briefly,  suffice  with  regard  to  the  site  and 
general  characteristics  of  Britain.  We  come  now  to  speak 
of  the  people  by  whom,  and  the  time  at  which,  the  island 
was  first  inhabited.  What  we  do  not  find  in  Bede  we 
borrow  from  other  authors  \  They  tell  us  that  the  British 
nation  was  founded  by  Dardanus,  who  was  the  father  of 
Troius.  Troius  was  the  father  of  Priamus  and  Anchises. 
Anchises  was  father  of  ^neas,  -^neas  of  Ascanius,  Ascanius 
of  Silvius.  When  the  wife  of  Silvius  was  pregnant,  a  sooth- 
sayer predicted  that  the  son  she  should  bring  forth  would 
slay  his  father.  The  soothsayer  was  put  to  death  for  this 
prophecy ;  but  the  son  that  was  bom,  and  who  was  called 
Brute,  filter  a  time,  while  he  was  playing  with  boys  of  his 
own  age,  struck-  his  father  with  an  arrow  and  kiUed  him. 
It  was  done  not  purposely,  but  by  chance-medley ;  where- 
upon Brute,  being  banished  from  Italy,  came  into  Gaul. 
There  he  founded  the  city  of  Tours,  and  having  afterwards 
invaded  the  district  of  the  Armoricans,  he  passed  from 
thence  into  this  island,  subjugated  its  southern  regions, 
and  called  it,  after  his  own  name,  Britain.  Some  writers, 
however,  affirm  that  when  Brute  reigned  in  Britain,  Eli, 
the  high-priest,  was  judge  of  Israel,  and  Posthumus  or 
Silvius,  son  of  Mneas,  reigned  among  the  Latins.  Brute 
was  his  grandson.  After  an  interval  of  80  years,  it  hap- 
pened that  the  Picts,  a  Scythian  race,  having  embarked  on 
the  ocean,  were  driven  by  *the  winds  round  the  coast  of 
Britain,  till  at  length  they  reached  the  north  of  Ireland, 
where,  finding  the  nation  of  the  Scots  already  in  possession, 

'  This  £Etbuloiu  account  of  the  origin  of  the  Britons  is  taken  from  Nen- 
niiii,  iii.  v. 


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10  WaSI  OF  HUliTDIQ]X»f.  [BOOX  J. 

diej  begged  to  be  allowed  to  settle  also,  but  fsuled  in  ob- 
tatniiig  their  request  For  the  Scots  said,  '*This  island 
^ould  not  contain  us  both,  but  we  know  that  there  is 
another  idand  not  &r  from  ours,  to  the  eastward,  whi<^ 
ire  can  see  at  a  distance  when  the  days  are  clearer  than 
ordinary.  If  you  will  go  there  you  will  be  able  to  establish 
yours^res ;  and  if  you  meet  wkh  opposition  we  will  come 
to  your  asststanee."  The  Hots,  therefore^  crossing  over  to 
Britain,  began  to  colonize  the  northern  parts  of  the  island ; 
for  the  Britons  were  already  settled  in  the  south.  The 
Plots  hairing  no  wires  asked  them  of  the  Scots,  who  con- 
sulted to  grant  them  upon  the  sole  condition  that  wh^i 
any  uncertainty  arose  in  state  affairs  they  should  elect  a 
king  irom  the  royal  race  in  the  female  line  rather  thaa  in 
the  male ;  which  custom,  it  appears,  is  maintained  among 
^e  Picts  to  the  present  day.  Such,  then,  are  the  traditions 
wMdi  we  find  in  old  writers  concerning  the  amval  o£  the 
Britons  in  that  part  of  ihe  worid  whidi  is  called  Britain,  as 
well  as  the  arrival  of  the  Picts  in  the  same  island.  And 
though  it  is  an  island,  being  very  extensive,  its  excellence 
is  not  diminished  on  that  account;  when,  in  truth,  the 
wh<de  eartji  is  itself  an  island.  But  as  it  is  a  common 
saying,  "rain  is  mingled  withi  wind,  and  laughter  with 
«ighs,"  the  preeminent  wealth  and  advantages  of  England 
have  excited  the  envy  and  cupidity  of  neighbouring  nadonB. 
It  has,  therefore,  been  very  frequently  invaded,  and  often 
subdued.  Thus,  in  process  of  time,  the  Scots  also  migrated 
from  Ireland  into  Britain,  imder  their  chief  Beuda,  and 
either  by  fair  means,  or  by  force  of  arms,  obtained  posses- 
sion of  that  part  of  the  countiy  belonging  to  the  Picts 
which  these  new  settlers  still  occupy.  They  are  called 
Bal^eudins,  from  ihe  name  <^  their  dbief ;  Dal,  in  their 
language,  signifying  la  portion  or  district.  This  leads  me  to 
say  something  witii  regard  to  Ireland,  for  though,  properly, 
it  is  not  my  subject,  it  is  nearly  connected  with  it.  May 
what  I  sliall  add  be  to  the  honour  of  Almighty  God  1 

Next  to  Britain,  Ireland  is  the  jQnest  isltmd  in  the  world ; 
and,  indeed,  though  it  is  inferior  to  Britain  in  wealth,  it 
greatly  surpasses  it  in  the  salubrity  and  serenity  of  its 
<^imate,  arising  from  the  nature  of  its  position*  For  while 
it  is  less  extended  towards  the  north,  it  stretches  mUfih 


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liOOK  I.]  PESOBIPTIOlff  OF  IBELAHD.  11 

isrther  than  Britain  towards  the  northern  eodfit  of  Spain, 
$n>m  which,  however,  a  wide  sea  divides  it.  In  Ireland 
«now  seldom  or  never  lies  on  the  ground  more  than  three 
tiays;  no  man  there,  on  aeconnt  of  winter,  either  makes 
hay  in  the  susmier,  or  erects  buildings  to  shelter  his  cattle. 
•No  reptiles  aie  seai  there:  no  serpent  can  exist;  for 
though  serpents  have  heen  d^ten  earned  there  &om  Bri- 
tain, when  the  ship  s^pproaches  the  shore,  as  soon  as  th^ 
breathe  the  air  wafted  irom  the  land  they  instantly  die. 
On  the  odier  hand,  almost  all  the  products  oi  the  island 
^are  antidotes  to  poison.  In  short,  we  have  known  persons 
bitten  by  serpents,  to  whom  the  scrapings  of  the  leaves  <rf 
books  bronght  from  Ireland,  immersed  in  water,  having 
been  given  to  drink,  the  potion  immedifitely  absorbed  the 
Tenom,  which  was  spreading  tbrou^out  the  body,  and 
allayed  the  swelling.  Gt>d  hath  theref<»re  endowed  the 
island  with  this  wondeiM  gift,  and  has  appointed  a  multi- 
tude of  the  saints  for  its  protection.  Moreover,  He  has 
enridied  it  with  milk  and  honey ;  vineyards  are  not  want- 
ing, and  it  abounds  with  fish  and  fowl,  deer  and  goats. 
li^  is  truly  the  countiy  of  the  Soots ;  but  if  any  one  is 
desorous  <^  knowing  the  time  when  it  was  first  inhabited, 
Ihough  I  find  nothmg  about  it  in  Venerable  Bede,  the 
following  is  the  account  given  by  another  writer.  At  the 
time  ih^  Egyptians  were  drowned  in  the  Bed  Sea,  the  sur- 
vivors banished  from  among  them  a  certain  nobleman 
named  Scyticus,  that  he  mi^t  not  acquire  the  dominion 
over  them.  The  banished  man  having  wand^ed  for  some 
time  in  Africa,  at  last  came  vdth  his  family  to  the  dwellings 
of  the  Philistiiies,  and  by  the  Salt  Lake  they  journeyed 
betwe^i  Russicada  and  the  mountains  of  Syria,  and  came 
by  the  Biver  Malva,  and  traversed  Mauritania,  navigating 
the  Tuscan  Sea  to  ihe  Pillars  of  Hercules.  Thus  they 
arrived  in  Sp^dn,  where  they  dwelt  many  years,  and  their 
posterity  multij^d  greatly.  Thence  they  came  into  Ire- 
land, 1200  years  after  ihe  passage  of  Israel  through  ihe 
Red  Sea.  The  Britons,  however,  inhabited  Britain  before. 
I'or  the  Britons  occupied  Britain  in  the  third  age  of  the 
world ;  the  Scots,  Ireland,  in  the  fourth.  These  accoimts 
are  not  much  to  be  depended  on ;  but  it  is  certain  that  the 
Scots  came  from  Spain  to  Ireland,  and  that  part  of  them. 


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12  HENBY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  !• 

migrating  from  thence  to  Britain,  added  a  third  nation 
there  to  the  Britons  and  the  Picts;  for  the  part  which 
remained  still  speak  the  same  language,  and  are  called 
Navarrese.  There  is  a  broad  gulf  of  fiie  sea  which  for- 
merly divided  the  nation  of  the  Picts  from  the  Britons. 
It  runs  from  the  west  deep  into  the  country,  where  stands, 
to  the  present  day,  a  strongly-fortified  city  called  Alcluith ', 
on  the  north  side  of  which  the  Scots,  of  whom  we  have 
already  spoken,  fixed  their  settlement. 

Julius  Caesar  was  the  first  of  the  Romans  who  invaded 
Britain,  sixty  years  before  the  incarnation  of  our  Lord^, 
and  in  the  year  693  after  the  building  of  Rome.  He  was 
joined  in  his  consulship  with  Lucius  Bibulus,  and,  having 
subjugated  the  Germans  and  JGauls,  who  were  then  parted 
by  the  river  Rhine,  he  came  into  the  country  of  the  Morini, 
from  which  is  the  shortest  passage  to  Britain.  Here  he 
caused  eighty  ships /of  burthen  and  light  galleys  to  be 
equipped,  and  transported  his  legions  into  Britain.  Things 
did  not  at  first  turn  out  according  to  his  expectation ;  for, 
when  disembarking,  he  had  to  encounter  an  attack  from  the 
Britons  much  severer  than  he  had  expected,  and,  finding  his 
force  outnmnbered  by  a  foe  whom  he  had  greatly  under- 
rated, he  was  compelled  to  re-embark  his  troops.  On  his 
return  to  Gaul  he  met  with  a  violent  storm,  in  which  he 
lost  a  considerable  part  of  his  fleet,  great  numbers  of  his 
soldiers,  and  almost  all  his  horses.  Exasperated  at  his  ill 
success,  having  estabUshed  his  legions  in  winter  quarters, 
he  caused  six  hundred  ships  of  both  sorts  to  be  fitted  out 
[B.C.  54],  and  early  in  the  spring  sailed  again  for  Britain  with 
his  whole  force.  But,  whUe  he  marched  his  army  against 
the  enemy,  his  fleet  lying  at  anchor  was  assailed  by  a 
furious  tempest,  which  either  dashed  the  ships  against 
each  other,  or  drove  them  on  shore  as  wrecks.  Forty  of  the 
ships  were  lost;  the  rest  were  after  some  time,  and  with 
great  difficulty,  repaired.  The  consummate  general,  there- 
fore, seeing  all  hopes  of  retreat  cut  off,  the  more  urgently 

^  Dunbarton. 

'  This  date,  borrowed  from  Bede,  is  incorrect,  like  many  others  of  both 
authors.  It  is  now  generally  agreed  that  Cssar's  second  and  successfnl  in- 
vasion of  Britain  was  effected  B.O.  54,  u.o.  700.  The  abortive  expedition 
here  mentioned  took  pkce  the  summer  before. 


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B.C.  54]  INVASION   OF  JULIUS  CiESAB.  13 

roused  the  spirit  of  his  troops,  and,  while  he  was  in  the  act 
of  exhorting  them,  hattle  was  joined  with  the  enemy.  It 
was  fought  on  hoth  sides  witii  the  greatest  ardom-,  the 
Komans  having  no  hope  of  a  retreat,  the  Britons  an  assured 
hope  of  conquering  as  they  had  done  before.  Labienus, 
the  tribune,  who  led  the  van  of  the  Eoman  army  against 
the  division  of  Dolobellus,  who  was  the  lieutenant  of  the 
British  king,  charged  it  with  such  vigour  that  it  was  routed, 
put  to  flight,  and  pursued.  But  the  main  body  of  the  royal 
anny  was  stationed  between  the  columns  of  GsBsar  and 
Labienus.  It  was  commanded  by  Belinus,  the  brother  of 
the  king  Cassibelaun,  and  the  son  of  Lud\  a  very  brave 
king,  who  had  gained  possession  of  many  islands  of  the 
sea  by  the  success  of  his  arms.  The  royal  army  was 
therefore  able  to  surround  the  cavalry  of  lllabienus,  who 
was  slain  with  all  his  troops.  And  now  Julius  per- 
ceiving his  ill  fortune  and  being  sensible  that  to  avoid 
greater  disaster  he  must  have  recourse  to  manoeuvring, 
instead  of  direct  attacks,  he  feigned  a  retreat.  The  Britons 
pursued  the  retiring  army  and  slew  great  numbers,  but 
were  checked  by  a  wood  into  which  the  Romans  threw 
themselves.  Preparing  there  for  a  third  attack,  Csesar  thus 
exhorted  his  troops : — 

"Invincible  fellow  soldiers,  who  have  braved  the  perils  of 
the  sea  and  the  toils  of  marches  and  battles  by  land,  and 
have  been  daunted  neither  by  the  fierce  onset  of  the  Gauls, 
nor  the  resolute  courage  of  ike  German  nations,  think  not 
that  I  suppose  any  words  of  mine  can  add  to  that  disci- 
plined courage  which  is  already  perfect,  and  which,  tried  in 
so  many  fields,  can  neither  be  added  to  nor  diminished : 
that  valour,  I  say,  which  has  always  shone  brightest  when 
danger  was  greatest,  and,  while  others  have  despaired,  has 
led  you  exultingly  onward  to  certain  victory.  I  need  not 
recall  to  your  minds  what  is  fixed  in  your  own  memories, 
and  in  those  of  all  nations,  how  often,  seemingly  conquered, 
we  have  conquered  our  conquerors ;  and,  not  disheartened 
by  our  disasters,  have  become  braver  than  the  brave  by 
whom  we  have  been  repulsed.  Courage,  when  provoked, 
becomes  desperate.    Now  then,  if  you  have  any  regard  for 

'  According  to  Geoffrey  of  MonmoutB,  Lud  was  brother  of  Cassibelaun. 


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14  HSNET  OF  HUNIIN€a>ON.  [BOOK  !• 

the  glory  of  the  Boman  name,  now  is  the  time  to  exhibit 
that  militairy  discipline  in  whi^  you  have  been  perfectly 
trained,  and  which  you  lu»re  always  perfectly  maintained,  in 
its  hi^iest  perfection  in  t^s  time  of  our  utmost  need* 
"For  myself,  of  two  issues  I  have  inreyocaUy  chosen,  either 
to  conquer,  whidi  is  gionous^  or  to  die  fer  our  country, 
which  is  in  the  power  of  every  man.  Flight  is  only  the 
refine  of  cowards.  Let  Ihose  then  asratmg  you  who  are  of 
the  same  mind  with  myself  hold  up  their  invincible  right 
hands,  and  let  our  enennes  be  aatonished  to  find  us  reani- 
mated by  our  repulses,  and  recruited  by  our  losses."^ 

Having  thus  spoken  he  extmded  his  rig^t  hand,  and  the 
whole  army  with  loud  shoots  raised  their  hands  to  heaven, 
and  thus  cheering  began  the  battle.  Then  it  was  that,  the 
legions  being  skilfully  disposed,  the  porseveiing  obstinacy 
with  which  they  foi^ht  di8|dayed  the  superiority  of  the 
Boman  discipline.  Content  to  stand  on  their  defence,, 
while  the  Britons  eaiiaosted  themsdves  by  r^>eated  attacks, 
the  troops  of  0«sar  were  fresh  when  the  islanders  had 
lost  their  vigour.  Victory  was  on  the  side  of  the  Bomans, 
though  not  without  severe  loss.  From  thence  Osesar 
marched  to  the  river  Thames.  A  large  body  of  the  enemy 
had  posted  themselves  on  the  further  side  of  the  river  under 
the  command  of  Cassibelann,  who  had  planted  ^larp  stakes 
in  the  river  bank  and  in  the  water  where  it  was  crossed  by 
a  ford'.  The  remains  of  these  stakes  are  to  be  seen  at  the 
present  day ;  they  appear  to  be  about  the  thickness  of  & 
man's  thigh,  and,  being  i^kxI  with  lead,  renudn  immovably 
fixed  in  the  bed  of  the  river.  This  being  discovered,  and 
avoided  by  the  Bomans,  &ey  attacked  the  barbarians,  who, 
not  being  able  to  stand  the  shock  of  the  legions,  retired 
into  the  woods,  firom  the  shelter  of  which  they  grievously 
galled  the  Bomans  by  repeated  sallies.  The  strongly-forti- 
fied city  of  Tiinovantum^  surrendered  to  Csesar,  under  its 
governor  Androgens,  delivering  to  him  seventy  hostages. 

^  Being  nmble  to  dkeoTer  wliere  tlM  AxchdeMoii  foimd  the  neord  of  this 
itiztiag  addrefli,  we  may  attribute  it  to  Us  own  inTentioii,  in  imitation  of 
the  speeches  which  both  poets  and  historians  have  put  into  the  mouths  of 
their  heroes  on  similar  occasions. 

^  This  ford  of  the  Thames  is  supposed  to  have  been  near  Bichmond. 

'  Supposed  to  be  Loadoa* 


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Bx.  54-44.]        JULITJS  osaEiiB  m^iHDJuam.  1ft 

!bi  like  mmmer  several  other  towns  entered  mto  treaties 
\tith  the  iiomans,  and  supplied  guides  by  ipdiose  aid  Oiesar 
penetrated  to  the  oapit^id  city  of  Casaibelaon,  covered  oq 
botii  sides  by  morasses  and  further  protected  by  thiek 
woods,  while  it  was  stored  witii  abundant  supplies.  The 
city  was  t£^en  after  an  obstinate  defence^. 

EyentuaOy,  Geesar  returning  into  Gaul,  and  being  dis-^ 
tracted  by  the  cares  of  wars  whidi  beset  him  <m  eT^  side^ 
withdrew  from  Britain  the  legicms  whidi  he  had  plfteed  in. 
wmter  quarters,  in  order  that  they  might  accompany  him  tc^ 
B<Hne :  a  &ct  to  which  Lucan  releis  >— 

"  The  fire&^orn  Britons  toM  tlieir  yellow  liair. 
No  longer  cnrb'd  by  stationary  camps.*'' 

Returning  with  regret  to  Rome,  he  ordered  the  fifth 
month  to  be  called  July  in  honour  of  his  own  name.  He 
^i^ks  afterwards  treaeheronsly  assassinated  in  the  senate- 
house  on  the  Ides  of  March.  As  we  ha^ve  to  i^ak  of 
Ceesar  and  his  successors  who  ruled  Bsiton  to  ihe  time  <^ 
Martian,  who  was  the  f orty«£»urtii  in  succession  from  Julius 
Cffisar,  we  hare^  no  wish  to  diminish  their  r^iown.  We 
should  hesitate  to  compare  them  in  point  of  morals  to  our 
own  Christian  princes,  while  it  woc^  be  a  doome  that  the 
latter  should  be  inferior. 

The  panegyrick  of  Sdinus  on  Julius  CfiBsar  is  just: 
"As  much  as  Sergius  and  SisinniuSrthe  bravest  of  soldiers,. 

■  There  seems  to  be  little  doubt  Hbai  Yernlsan,  or  St  AlbMU,  was  the- 
capital  of  Oassibelaun. 

>  Lucan's  Fbarsalia,  Book  L  L  402.  Hemy  «f  Hsntiigdoa  hmi  substi- 
tuted Britanni  for  Buteni,  without  any  authority,  which  I  have  been  able  to 
discorer.  Some  hare  read  SnSri,  considering  the  reading  justified  by  the 
descriptive  ^pelhition,  flavi ;  but  the  epithet  "  yellow-ha£ed  "  was  applied, 
sot  only  to  the  Germans,  but  to  all  tiie  northern  nations.  Lucan  hhnse^ 
dina  designates  the  Britons : — 

^  celsoa  ut  Gallia  conns 
Nobilis,  «t  flavia  sefuctetw  mirta  Britaxuus.*' 

J^kan,  ill.  78. 

In  ike  passage  quoted  by  the  Afchdeaeon,  Boteni  is  eTideatiy  the  tra« 
nading,  for  the  context  nnpies  larious  Gaulish  tribes;  those  of  the  YosgeSy 
the  I&gones,  about  Langres,  and  the  Isarse,  on  the  Isere.  Then  the 
Buteni,  a  people  of  Narbonese  Gaul,  afterwards  le  BoTeigoe,  are  mentioned  ; 
Mowed  by  refsfenee  to  the  tribes  on  the  Atar,  new  L'Aube,  in  Languedoe, 
and  the  Yar  in  Proyence. 


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16  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK   I. 

outshone  all  other  soldiers,  so  much  did  CflBsar  excel  aU  other 
generals,  nay,  other  men  of  all  times.  In  the  wars  carried  on 
under  his  command,  1 , 1 92,000  of  the  enemy  were  slain.  How 
many  were  slain  in  the  civil  wars  he  was  reluctant  to  record. 
He  fought  fifty-two  pitched  battles ;  being  the  only  general 
who  exceeded  Marcus  Marcellinus,  who  fought  thirty-nine. 
No  one  wrote  more  rapidly,  no  one  read  with  greater  facility ; 
he  was  able  to  dictate  four  letters  at  one  and  the  same  time. 
So  great  was  his  excellence  that  those  whom  he  conquered 
by  his  arms,  he  conquered  yet  more  by  his  clemency. 

Augustus,  succeeding  Julius  Caesar,  obtained  the  empire 
of  the  whole  world ;  and  received  tribute  fi:om  Britain  as 
well  as  from  his  other  don^inions,  as  Virgil  remarks : — 

"  Embroidered  Britons  lift  the  purple  screen."  ' 

This  he  did  in  the  forty-second  year  of  his  reign,  when  the  true 
Light  shone  upon  the  world,  and  all  kingdoms  and  islands, 
before  over-shadowed  with  darkness,  were  taught  that  there  is 
One  only  God,  and  saw  the  image  of  Him  that  created  them. 
When  Augustus  had  reigned  My-five  years  and  a  half,  he 
paid  the  debt  of  nature.  Eutropius  thus  p«negyrizes  him  : 
"  Besides  the  civil  wars,  in  which  he  was  always  victorious, 
Augustus    subdued  Armenia,  Egypt,   Galatia,    Cantabria, 

*  Geor.  iii.  25.  The  sense  is  not  very  clear,  and  I  have  therefore  ren- 
dered the  words  literally,  in  preference  to  offering  any  gloss  npon  it 
Dryden  thus  paraphrases  it : — 

**  When  the  prond  theatres  disclose  the  scene 
Which  interwoven  Britons  seem  to  raise. 
And  show  the  trinniphs  which  their  shame  displays.*' 

Heyne  conjectures  that  allusion  is  made  to  the  curtain  of  the  theatre  on 
which  were  pictured,  embroidered,  or  interwoven,  the  tall  and  gaunt  forms 
of  British  captives,  represented  in  the  act  of  rising  from  the  ground  and  lifting 
the  curtain.  However  this  may  be,  the  quotation  from  the  Georgics,  which 
Henry  of  Huntingdon  borrows  from  Nennius,  feils  of  proving  the  subjection 
of  the  Britons  in  the  time  of  Augustus.  We  find  no  authority  for  the  state- 
ment,  that  this  emperor  received  tribute  from  Britain,  except  a  passage  in 
the  De  Rebus  Gelicis  of  Jomandes,  the  Goth,  a  work  of  the  sixth  century,  in 
which  he  made  use  of  the  now  lost  Ecclesiastical  History  of  Cassiodorus,  who 
was  governor  of  Sicily  in  the  same  century — ^no  authorities  whatever  against 
the  silence  of  contemporary  classical  authors.  Dion  Cassius  tells  us,  that 
Augustus  came  into  Gaul  with  the  intention  of  invading  Britain,  as  the 
Britons  refused  to  enter  into  a  treaty  with  him,  but  was  prevented  by  the 
revolt  of  some  recently-subdued  tribes  of  Gaul. 


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B.C.  43.]  AUGUSTUS. — ^TIBEEIUS.  17 

Dalmatia,  Pannonia,  Aquitania,  Ulyricum,  Khetimn,  tho 
Vindelici,  the  Salassi,  Pontus,  and  Cappadocia.  He  so 
completely  reduced  the  Dacians  and  Germans,  that  he 
transported  400,000  captives  of  their  race  into  Gaul,  where 
he  settled  them  on  the  ftirther  bank  of  the  Rhine.  The 
Persians  gave  him  hostages,  which  they  had  never  done 
before,  restoring  the  standards  taken  from  Crassus.  He 
was  naild  and  gracious,  affable  in  spirit,  and  handsome  in 
person ;  his  eyes,  particularly,  were  beautiM.  Clement  to 
his  subjects,  he  so  treated  his  friends  that  he  almost  raised 
them  to  a  level  with  himself.  He  engaged  in  war  with  no 
nation  but  upon  just  grounds,  esteeming  triumphs  foimded 
upon  unfounded  pretences,  worthless.  He  was  so  loved  by  fo- 
reign and  even  barbarous  peoples,  that  in  some  instances  their 
kings  spontaneously  came  to  Rome  to  do  him  homage; 
others,  as  Juba  and  Herod,  founded  cities  to  his  honour. 
He  devoted  some  part  of  every  day  to  reading,  writing,  and 
elocution.  He  was  sparing  in  his  diet,  patient  of  rebuke, 
and  placable  to  conspirators.  He  found  Rome  built  of 
bricks,  he  left  it  of  mai'ble." 

Tiberius,  th*  step-son  of  Augustus,  succeeded  him  in 
the  empire,  which  extended  over  Britain  as  well  as  the  other 
kingdoms  of  the  world  ^.     He  reigned  twenty-three  years. 

*  There  is  no  autbority  for  the  statement,  that  Britain  formed  part  of  the 
Eoman  Empire  during  the  reigns  of  Angustus  and  Tiberius.  It  would  be  a 
bootless  task  to  correct  all  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  errors  and  misstatements, 
in  some  of  which  he  copies  Bede.  [See  notes  to  the  Eccles.  Hist,  cc.  iii. 
iy.  in  the  present  series.}  We  should  not  have  noticed  the  present  mis- 
statement, but  on  account  of  a  popular  error  which  attributes  ^e  conquest 
of  Britain  to  Julius  Caesar,  and  supposes  that  from  his  time  the  island,  or 
some  part  of  it,  remained  in  subjection  to  the  Romans.  The  facts  are,  that 
in  his  second  and  most  successful  expedition,  Caesar  was  not  able,  after  much 
opposition  and  one  signal  defeat,  to  penetrate  fsffther  into  the  country 
than  about  eighty  miles  from  his  place  of  landing,  near  Walmer,  to  Yeru- 
1am,  or  St  Albans,  following  for  the  most  part  the  valley  of  the  Thames, 
which  river  he  crossed  near  Bichmond.  London  and  St  Albans  were  the 
only  towns  he  reduced,  and  these  he  abandoned  after  a  few  months' 
occupation,  withdrawing  his  whole  army  from  the  island,  to  which  he  never 
returned.  The  Britons  xecovered  their  independence,  and  continued  unmo- 
lested under  the  government  of  their  native  kings  and  chiefs  during  the 
reigns  of  Augustus,  Tiberius,  and  Caligula,  though  the  latter  menaced  them 
with  a  fresh  invasion,  which  ended  in  an  idle  and  ridiculous  parade.    A 

0 


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18  BSSBX  <XT  HUHTIMOZ>OV.  [BOOK   I. 

Hie  was  pmdeut  and  fortunate  in  war,  aad  thus  became 
worthy  to  be  the  suceessor  of  Augustus.  In  literature  he 
was  highly  accomplished,  but  still  more  remariuible  for 
eloquence,  being  haf>pi^  in  uiq^remeditoted  relies  than  in 
set  speeches.  Hie  was  charged  with  dissembling,  inasmuch 
as  he  assomed  indifierence  to  those  he  really  loved  aad 
eourteay  to  persons  he  disliked^. 

Caius,  sumamed  Caligula,  ruled  the  empire  of  the  world 
about  &ve  years.  Claudius,  who  succeeded  him  ajd.  6^^ 
jmd  u.c.  796,  Tisited  Britain  in  the  fourth  year  of  his  reign, 
and  received  the  submissioii  of  some  lei^lted  tribes  with- 
otit  recourse  to  arms.  He  added  the  Oikoey  Ifiknds^ 
already  mentioned*  to  the  empire,  and,  returning  to  Bome 
after  an  absfflice  of  six  months,  assiuned  for  himself  and 
his  son  the  surname  of  Eritannicus,  yrhkh  is  given  him  by 
J^nvenal^:— 

"  And  Bhow*d,  Britannicns,  to  all  that  earner 
The  womb  tiiat  bore  thee.** 

In  this  year  that  grievous  famine  prevailed  in  Syi*ia, 
which  is  recorded  by  Bt  Luke  in  the  Acts«of  the  Apostles 
to  lui^e  been  ppedioted  by  A^i^us.  In  the  time  of  Claudius, 
Fater,  the  dmf  founder  of  our  faith,  became  bishop  of 
Home,  which  see  he  filled  for  twenty- five  years,  t.  e,  to  the 
last  year  of  l^ero.  Vespasian,  commissioned  by  Claudius, 
"went  into  Gaul,  and  afterwards  to  Britain,  where  he  had 
Ihirty-two  ^igagements  with  the  enemy,  reduced  two  v^y 

period,  thaefiare,  of  nearly  a  centary  elap«ed  before  the  moi«  succesaf  bl  ia- 
vaiiMi  mder  fie  Emperor  Olandku^  firom  vinoh  the  estabUahment  of  tbe 
Boman  dominion  in  Britain  datM. 

^  icnieL  Yiotor. 

'  The  real  date  of  tht  expedition  of  Plautiai^  under  Claudiagy  was  ±J>. 
44,  TJ.o.  796.  The  lame  ytta  i^on  hig  general's  success,  the  Es^ror  himself 
crossed  over  to  Britain,  but  only  ronained  in  the  isUmd  sixteen  days. 
This  bappened  ninety-seren  years  after  Gsesar's  abandonment  of  bis  enter- 
prise. Bede  says  that  '*  be  was  the  only  one  either  before  or  after  Julius 
-OsBsar,  who  bad  dared  to  bmd  in  the  island,"  so  that  Henry  of  Huntingdon's 
alory  of  the  '*  revolted  tribes  "  seems  to  be  pure  invention. 

*  ?9iis  also  is  incorrect  The  Orkneys  were  not,redaoed  till  the  conquests 
of  Agricola  under  Yespasiaii,  and  bit  sucoessoit  reduced  the  northern  parts 
vi  Britain  to  subjection. 

W«T.  Sat  ri.  124. 


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psfwedvl  ixibes,  took  twenty  towns,  and  added  tbe  Isle  of 
Wi^t  to  the  empire.  When  Glatidius  had  reigned  thirteen 
yeaxB,  h&  went  the  wnof  oi  his  fathers.  His  charact^  is 
thus  sumaoaed  isp :  ^'  The  administration  of  Olaudiiis  was 
generally  moderate,  though  in  some  alOEiirs  he  aeted  in- 
xanxtiously.  ^oeesi^ul  in  wmr,  he  ediai^d  the  empice; 
witile  in  peftee  he  was  ao  grackms  to  his  friends,  that  when 
i^ntlinus^,  a  general  of  great  eminence  who  had  distin- 
.gsufifaed  hknscdf  in  Britain,  celebrated  his  trimnph,  the  em- 
pmor  marched  on  his  left  hand  as  he  s^eended  to  the 
iCajttloL"* 

Ifero,  who  leigned  thirteen  years  and  ra;tiher  more  tiian  half, 
Ifaough  he  hid  been  an  active  soklier  in  his  youth,  lapsed 
into  sloth  after  he  had  obtained  the  empire.  Hence,  besides 
other  inimies  to  the  empire,  he  nearly  lost  Britain;  for 
dau^g  hk  government  two  of  the  greatest  cities  in  the 
island  were  sacked  and  ruined  ^  Nero  perished  miserably 
itfae  same  year  in  which  he-  slew  Peter  and  Paxil 

Vespasian,  who  destroyed  Jerusalem,  reigned  nearly  ten 
^fiears  ^.  It  was  he  who  under  Olaudius  was  sent  into  Britain 
and  reduoedthe  Isle  of  Wight  to  the  power  of  the  Eomans. 
Thk  island  extends  from  east  to  west  about  30,000  paces ; 
fe»3iL  ni^rth  to  soutli,  twelve;  and  is  distant  in  its  eastern 
part  six,  and  in  its  western  twelve,  miles  from  the  southern 
xjoast  of  Badtain.  This  great  man  erected  a  column  of  the 
jhetght  of  107  fe^     The  eulogimn  of  Vespasian  is  thus 

>  For  FaoliiiBS,  ^0  did  not  cornxnand  in  Britaw  till  the  time  of  Nero, 
lead  Plautim.  By  the  victonef  of  this  genend  over  Cunobeline,  the 
southern  regions  oi  Britain  were  reduced  to  a  Boman  proviooe.  He  was 
anceeeded  by  Ostorins,  the  conqueror  of  Caiadauc,  or  Caractacus  as  he  was 
«a&ed  by  the  BomaiiB. 

^  ^Ehe  suoeesaes  (rf  Boadkea,  Queen  of  the  Iceni,  a  British  tribe,  who 
woe  natives  of  Becbyshire,  are  here  alluded  to.  She  is  said  to  have  reduced 
to  ashes  liondon,  Colchester,  and  Veralam,  and  to  have  massacred  70,000 
<fi  the  Romans  and  their  allies.  We  do  not  wonder  at  Henry  of  Hunting- 
don's imperiect  acquaintance  with  the  history  of  the  Boman  emperors  ;  but 
-It »  rarprising  that  he  gives  so  confused  an  acoount,  and  collected  such  few 
^ddents  of  their  transactions  in  Britain.  Now  it  was  that  Suetonius  Pau- 
linus  commanded  in  Britain.  He  reduced  Mona,  and  exterminated  the 
Druids,  and  was  ultimately  successful  in  recovering  the  province  after  the 
losses  in  the  time  of  Boadicea. 

*  Eutrop.  vii.  8. 

*  The  short  reigns  of  Qalba,  Otho,  and  VitelHus,  ase  not  noticed. 

o  2 


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20  HENBY  OP  HUNTIKODON.  [BOOK  !• 

faithfully  given ^ :  **  He  conducted  his  government  with  great 
moderation,  but  was  inclined  to  avarice :  not,  indeed,  that  he 
raised  money  by  imjust  methods,  and  what  he  careftilly  col- 
lected he  spent  freely,  being  especially  boimtifiil  to  those 
who  were  in  need ;  so  that  it  would  be  difficult  to  name  any 
prince  whose  liberality  was  at  once  so  great  and  so  just. 
His  clemency  was  such  that  he  was  not  disposed  to  inflict 
severer  punishment  than  exile  even  on  those  who  were 
guilty  of  treason.  He  was  conqueror  of  Judsea,  Achaia, 
Lycia,  Khodes,  Byzantium,  Samos,  Thrace,  Cilicia,  Coma- 
gene.  Injuries  and  enmities  he  buried  in  oblivion;  he 
bore  patiently  the  invectives  of  lawyers  and  philosophers, 
and  was  courteous  and  affable  to  the  senate,  the  people,  and 
all  the  world." 

Titus,  his  son,  reigned  two  years  and  two  months,  a 
prince  endowed  with  every  virtue,  so  that  he  was  called  the 
idol  and  the  darling  of  the  human  race.  He  built  the 
amphitheatre  of  Kome,  at  the  dedication  of  which  five 
thousand  wild  animals  were  slain.  His  panegyric  is  of  the 
highest  order^ :  "  Eloquent  as  well  as  brave,  of  great  mode- 
ration, he  transacted  the  business  of  the  law-courts  in  Latin, 
and  wrote  poems  and  tn^edies  in  Greek.  At  the  siege  of 
Jerusalem,  serving  under  his  father,  he  struck  down  twelve 
of  the  foremost  of  the  garrison,  each  with  a  single  arrow. 
At  Kome  his  government  was  so  humane,  that  he  scarcely 
inflicted  punishment  on  any,  pardoning  tiiose  who  were 
convicted  of  conspiracy  against  his  person,  and  admitting 
them  to  the  same  familiarity  as  before ;  so  great  was  his 
kindness  and  liberality,  that  when  some  of  his  friends 
blamed  him  for  never  denying  any  request,  he  replied,  that 
*  no  one  should  depart  sad  from  the  presence  of  the  em- 
peror.* He  was  so  much  beloved  for  this  singular  gracious- 
ness,  and  so  severe  was  the  public  grief  for  his  death,  that 
all  lamented  him  as  if  each  had  lost  a  private  friend.  He 
expired  at  a  distance  from  Rome,  and  ihe  senate  receiving 
the  intelligence  late  in  the  evening  thronged  into  the  senate- 
house  and  paid  such  a  tribute  of  praise  and  acknowledgment 
to  the  memory  of  the  deceased  emperor,  as  they  had  never 
offered  to  him  when  he  was  alive  and  among  them." 

»  Eutrop.  viL  18.  »  Ibid.  vii.  14. 


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A.D.  82.]  DOMITIAN. — ^TEAJAN.  21 

Domitian,  the  brother  of  Titus,  reigned  fifteen  years  and 
five  months.  Next  to  Nero,  he  was  the  most  cruel  perse- 
cutor of  the  Christians.  Hateful  to  all,  particularly  to  the 
senate,  he  brought  about  his  own  destruction  ^ 

Nerva  held  the  empire  of  the  world  little  more  than  a 
year. 

Trajan  reigned  nineteen  years  and  a  half;  governing 
Britain,  as  well  as  the  other  provinces,  with  singular  vigour, 
and  extending  the  empire,  which  since  the  time  of  Augustus 
had  rather  been  defended  than  enlarged.  He  is  the  prince 
who  for  justice'  sake  plucked  out  one  of  his  own  eyes  and 
one  of  his  son's ;  and  whom  St.  Gregory  does  not  leave  in  hell. 
Those  who  read  him  will  imderstand  how  perfect  was  the 
character  of  the  man  whom,  though  a  heathen,  he  would  not 
consign  to  condemnation.  Suetonius  thus  eulogizes  him : 
**  Trajan,  a  prince  highly  accomplished  and  of  exemplary 
courage,  conquered  Dacia  and  the  country  about  the  Danube, 
together  with  Armenia,  which  the  Parthians  had  seized.  He 
gave  a  king  to  the  Albanians,  and  admitted  to  his  alliance 
the  kings  of  the  Iberi,  the  Sauromati  of  the  Bosphorans, 
the  Arabs,  the  Osroenians,  and  the  Colchians.  He  sub- 
dued and  took  possession  of  the  countries  of  the  Gordueni 
and  the  Marchamedians,  with  Antemusium,  a  great  pro- 
vince of  Persis,  Seleucia  and  Ctesiphon,  Babylon  and  the 
Messeni.  He  extended  his  frontier  to  the  borders  of  India 
and  the  Red  Sea,  forming  three  provinces,  Armenia,  Assyria, 
and  Mesopotamia,  with  Sie  nations  who  border  on  Madena. 
Afterwards  he  reduced  Arabia  to  the  condition  of  a  pro- 
vince, and  fitted  out  a  fleet  on  the  Red  Sea  by  means  of 
which  he  ravaged  the  coasts  of  India.  But  his  mihtary 
glory  was  excelled  by  his  humanify  and  moderation ;  bring- 
ing himself  to  the  level  of  all,  both  at  Rome  and  in  the 
provinces,  and  visiting  famiharly  his  fiiends  and  the  sick. 
He  mingled  with  them  on  festive  occasions,  and  sat  with 
them  in  the  same  chariots.  No  senator  received  injury 
from  him,  and  though  he  was  liberal  to  all,  his  revenue  was 


*  Our  author  does  not  notice  the  a^irs  of  Britain  during  the  reigns  of 
Vespasian,  Titus,  and  Domitian,  in  which  its  complete  subjugation  was 
effected  under  Julius  Agricola,  the  greatest  and  best  of  the  Boman  generals 
in  Britain^  and  who  may  be  considered  the  founder  of  British  civilization. 


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22  HENBX  OF  HUimNODOK.  [BOOK  !,> 

OQgnMBted  by  no  mpistiee.  fie  cfmkrreH  riches  and 
honours  on  those  wHh  i/vhom  he  was  but  slightly  acquaintecL 
He  embellished  the  whole  empire  with  pmblic  buMiiig8» 
conceding  many  privileges  to  the  mimioqmlilies ;  douii^. 
notdiking  that  was  not  gei^e  atnd  kind,  insonmch  that  during 
his  whole  reign  only  a  single  senator  was  condemned,  md 
that  one  by  the  senate  itself,  without  the  knowledge  of 
Trajan.  Thvis  tkffoo^out  the  ^Hoole  world  be  was  1^  ze^ 
presentative  of  the  Deity;  bikL  there  was  no  homage  whidx. 
1^  did  not  merit,  whe^r  alire  or  dead.  Among  other 
sayings  which  are  attributed  to  him,  the  fdlowing  is  r&» 
markable.  When  his  Mends  objeeted  to  him,  thai  he 
carried  his  complaisance  to  his  subjects  too  hoc,  he  replied^ 
that '  he  wi^ed  so  to  treat  private  individmls,  as  emjiczory. 
as  he  hinraelf^  if  in  a  privaite  station,  would  wiah  empecovs 
to  treat  him.'  He  was  the  only  one  who  was  buned  within 
the  city  waDs,  his  bones  being  collected  in  a  goklen  vm^ 
which  was  d^osited  in  the  forum  he  buik,  under  a  cokoui 
140  feet  in  height.  His  memoiy  is  still  cherished,  so  that 
even  in  our  age  the  phrase  of  the  acclamations  with  whieb 
the  emperors  are  hailed  in  the  senate  is,  that  they  be  *  iortxh 
nate  as  Augustus,  worthy  as  Tnyan! ' " 

Hajdiimi  ruled  the  wodd  twenty-ocie  years.  He  reduced  a 
firesh  rebellion  of  the  Jews,  and  having  rebuilt  Jerusalecn^ 
withheld  £rom  them  permission  to  visit  it.  This  is  his 
character^:  *'He  was  a  prince  of  great  moderati(m,  azui 
maintained  peace  during  his  entire  reign.  Once  only  he 
engaged  in  war,  and  then  by  cme  of  his  generals.  He  made 
a  progress  through  the  whole  circuit  of  the  Boman  world. 
The  edifices  he  built  were  numerous.  He  was  very  eloquent 
in  Latin,  and  learned  in  Ghredc" 

Antoninus  Pius  held  the  empire  of  the  world  twenty- 
three  years  and  a  half-:  *'An  upright  and  exemplary 
prince,  he  may  be  compared  to  Numa  Pon^)iliiis,  as  Trajan 
likened  to  Bomulus.  Severe  to  none,  gracioce  to  all,  he 
wielded  his  military  power  with  moderation,  defending 
rather  than  extending  the  provinces.  He  sought  out  men 
of  the  greatest  rectitude  for  the  administration  of  affairs, 
holding  the  good  in  honour,  recoiling  without  any  bitterness 

^  Eoli^  viii.  8.  ^  Ibid.  Toi  4. 


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AJ).  162.]  lIABCCB.-^lIJBBLniEk  ^ 

frauL  the  evil.  He  was  so  Tespeeted  by  kings  in  his 
alliance,  that  they  submitted  their  quarpels  to  hian,  azui 
aee^ted  his  arbhxatioiii.  Munificent  to  his  Mends,  he  yet 
1^  the  tEeasmy  rich.  His  clem^icy  gained  him  the  sur- 
name of  Pins." 

MaFeus  Antenmns  YerosS  with  his  brother  Aurelius 
liUciiK  CommodnS)  leigned  jomtly  ninete^i  years  and  two 
months.  The  empire  had  been  hi^rto  governed  by  a  single 
monaarch.  A  Parthian  war  was  conducted  with  admirable 
vakmr  and  good  fortune.  Puring  their  reign,  Eleutherius 
being  the  pontiff  who  gov^ned  the  Boman  Church,  Luciu& 
the  British,  king  impk)red  him  by  letter  to  take  measures 
&>r  his  cffiOLvecnon  ta  Christianity.  His  embassy  was  sue- 
eessful,  imd  the  Britons  retained  the  Mth  they  received,  in- 
violafte  and  undisturbed,  until  the  time  of  Diocletian.  A 
pane^rrie  of  Antonnms  Yerus  from  the  Eoman  history^  i 
*■*'  A&ex  the  death  of  Antoninus  his  consort  from  apoplexy,  he 
xemainedsoie  empevor,  with logh  renown.  He  never  changed 
conntenance  either  frtmi  joy  or  sorrow.  Embued  with  tjhe 
Stoic  phikasophy,  of  the  purest  morals,.and  the  hi^iest  eru- 
diticm,  be  was  profoundly  versed  both  in  Greek  and  Latin 
literature :  never  dated,  he  vsas  courteous  to  all ;  his  libe- 
zality  was  prompt,  and  his  adnmiietration  of  the  provinces 
mild  and  ben^aint  He  fou^t  sueeessfrilly  against  the 
Germans  i  and  waged  the  Msffeomannie  war  against  the 
Iqfiades,  the  Yandals,  the  SarmatiazK,  the  Suetes,  and  the 
whole  barbarism :  no  other  such  foicrtlL  war,  to  equal  tha 
Punic,  is  recorded.  The  hero  of  this  great  conflict  triumphed 
as  conqueror,  wii^  his  son  Commodus.  The  treasury  being 
exhausted,  he  was  compelled  to  sell  the  imperial  regalia, 
whidi  he  afterwards  redeemed  frc^n  those  who  were  willing 
to  restore,  taking  no  lunbrage  at  those  who  chose  to  retain, 
what  they  had.  purchased.  He  allowed  ilhistrious  men  to 
exhilnt  the  like  splendour,  and  to  be  served  with  simika: 
ceremony  in  their  entertainments,  as  himself.  The  magni* 
ficence  of  the  games  he  celebrated  in  honour  of  his  vieto- 

'  There  is  aome  confuiioa  in  the  names  cf  these  emperors^  which  Henry 
of  Huntingdon  borrows  from  Bade.  Antoninus  the  phihisopher  was  alsa 
Allied  Madrcus  Aurelius.  His  associate  in  the  empire  was  named  Lucius 
Verus. 

'  Hist.  MisceU.  z. 


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d4  HENBY  OF  HUNTUfGDOK.  [BOOK  X. 

lies  was  such  that  a  hundred  lions  are  said  to  have  been 
exhibited  at  one  time.'' 

Commodus,  son  of  the  last-named  Commodus,  was  em« 
peror  during  thirteen  years.  He  was  fortunate  in  war 
against  the  Germans ;  and  having  caused  the  head  of  the 
Colossus  to  be  removed,  he  replaced  it  by  one  taken  from  his 
own  statue.  iE^us  Pertinax  having  reigned  six  months, 
was  assassinated  in  his  own  palace  by  JuHan  a  lawyer. 

Severus  Pertinax  having  put  to  death  Juhan  the  lawyer, 
reigned  seventeen  years.  An  AMcan  by  birth  from  Lepti, 
a  town  of  Tripoli,  he  was  of  a  savage  d&sposition  and  pro- 
voked by  continual  wars,  but  he  ruled  the  state  by  vigorous 
efforts  fortunately.  Victorious  in  the  civil  wars,  which  were 
very  harassing,  and  Didius  Albinus,  who  had  proclaimed  him- 
self Csesar  at  Lyons,  in  Gaul,  being  slain,  he  passed  into  the 
British  Islands.  There,  after  many  fierce  batdes,  he  resolved 
on  dividing  the  part  of  the  island  he  had  recovered  from 
that  held  by  the  unconquered  tribes,  not,  as  some  consider,  by 
a  wall,  but  by  a  rampart.  For  a  wall  is  built  with  stones,  but 
a  rampart  for  defence  of  a  fortified  camp  is  constructed  of 
turfs,  which,  being  cut  from  the  soil,  are  built  up  like  a  wall; 
having  in  front  a  treilch  from  which  the  turfs  are  raised, 
and  in  which  stakes  of  stout  wood  are  planted.  Severus 
thus  made  a  deep  trench  with  a  very  strong  rampart,  fortified 
besides  with  frequent  towers,  from  one  sea  to  the  other. 
He  afterwards  fell  sick  and  died  at  York.  He  left  two  sons, 
Bassianus  and  Geta,  of  whom  Geta  was  adjudged  a  public 
enemy,  and  died.  Bassianus  becoming  emperor  assumed 
the  surname  of  Antoninus.  Eutropius  thus  eulogizes  Se- 
verus^ :  "  He  was  engaged  in  various  and  successfrd  wars ; 
conquering  the  Parthians,  the  Arabs,  and  the  Azabenians, 
whence  he  was  simiamed  Parthicus,  Arabicus,  Azabenicus. 
He  restored  the  honom-  of  the  Roman  name  throughout 
the  world ;  but  he  was  illustrious  also  for  civil  piursuits,  and 
was  called  Divus  from  his  learning  and  cultivation  of  philo- 
sophy." 

Antoninus  Caracalla,  the  son  of  Severus,  held  the  empire 
seven  years.  Macrinus,  having  reigned  one  year  at  Arche- 
lais,  was  slain,  with  his  son,  in  a  military  tumult.     Marcus 

*  Entrop.  viii.  9« 


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AJ).  219.]  EULGABALUS.— CLAUDIUS  II,  25 

Aiirelius  Antoninus^  was  emperor  four  years;  Aurelius 
Alexander^  thirteen.  The  latter  was  uniformly  dutiful  to 
his  mother  Mammea,  and  on  that  account  was  universally 
esteemed.  "  In  the  war  which  he  carried  on  against  the 
Persians,  he  conquered  with  glory  their  king  Xerxes.  He 
severely  regulated  the  military  discipline,  cashiering  entire 
legions  which  were  insubordinate.  At  Rome  he  was  very 
popular.     He  was  slain  in  a  military  tumult  in  Gaul."  ' 

Maximin  the  First  reigned  three  years,  and  gained  a 
victory  over  the  Germans ;  Gordian,  who  conquered  the  Per- 
sians, reigned  five.  At  this  time  Origen  flourished,  who  wrote 
five  thousand  books,  as  Jerom  relates.  Philip,  and  his  son 
Philip,  reigned  seven  years.  He  was  the  first  Christian 
emperor.  In  the  third  year  of  his  reign,  a  thousand  years 
fi-om  the  building  of  Rome  were  completed,  and  this  most 
at^stof  all  preceding  eras  was  celebrated  by  the  Christian 
emperor  with  magnificent  games.  "  The  temper  of  Philip 
the  younger  was  so  severe,  that  he  was  never  provoked  to 
merriment,  and  he  turned  his  face  away  fi:om  his  own  father 
when  he  indulged  in  laughter.  He  continually  resisted 
vice,  and  struggled  in  the  upward  path  of  virtue."*  Decius 
reigned  one  year  and  three  months.  He  persecuted  the 
Christians  from  hatred  to  the  two  Philips,  father  and  son, 
whom  he  had  slain.  GaUus,  with  Yolucianus  his  son, 
reigned  two  years  and  four  months.  Valerian,  with  his  son 
Gfldlienus,  reigned  fifteen  years.  Having  raised  a  persecu- 
tion against  Sie  Christians,  he  was  soon  afterwards  taken 
prisoner  by  the  Persian  king,  and,  being  deprived  of  sight, 
wore  out  die  rest  of  his  days  a  wretched  captive. 

Claudius  the  Second  reigned  one  year  and  nine  months. 
He  subjugated  the  Goths  who  had  devastated  Illyrium  and 
Macedonia  for  fifteen  years ;  for  which  a  shield  of  gold  was 
dedicated  to  him  in  the  senate-house,  and  a  golden  statue  in 
the  capitol.  AureUan  reigned  five  years  and  six  months. 
He  being  a  persecutor  of  ti^e  Christians,  a  thunderbolt  fell 
near  him,  to  the  great  horror  of  the  bystanders,  and  shortly 
afterwards  he  was  slain  by  the  soldiers.  The  eulogy  of 
Aurelian  from  the  Acta  of  Bemarkable  Mm^ :    "As  the 

>  Known  aa  Elagabalus.        '  Alexander  Severus.        ^  Eutrop.  viii.  13. 
*  Aurel  Victor.  •  Ibid. 


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M  HEXBY  09  HUMTIKdDOir.  [BOOK  X, 

"world  was  anibdaed  by  Akzandar  in  thirteen,  by  CttSttr 
in  fourteen  years,  Aurelian  rest^ed  peace  to  the  universe  by 
tbirteen  battles.  He  first  of  the  Eonuois  assumed  th& 
diadem  aoid  robes  adeemed  with  gold  and  jewels.  Finn  in 
correcting  military  licaice  and  dissohiteness  of  manners^ 
his  temper  was  somewhat  morose  and  haughty,  and  he  waa 
habitually  cruel"  Tacitus  reigned  six  m<Hitl^,  and,  being 
killed  at  Pontus,  was  succeeded  by  Florian,  who  three  months 
afterwards  was  skin  at  Tarsus.  Probus,  who  was  emperor 
six  years  and  ioiir  months,  completely  liberated  Gaul  from 
the  hostile  barbarians  who  infested  it.  "  He  was  a  prmco 
illustrious  for  his  activity,  vigour,  and  justice;  scarcely 
equal  to  Aurdian  in  gloiy,  but  excdiinghim  in  civil  virtues- 
Having  laid  the  foundations  of  peace  by  innumerable  wacFS, 
he  said  that  shcwrtly  there  would  be  no  need  of  soldiers."* 
Cams,  who  reigned  two  years,  having  been  victorious  over 
the  Persians,  fdl  near  the  river  Tigris. 

Diocletian  was  joint  emperor  with  Herculhis  Maximian 
for  twenty  years.  In  their  time  a  certain  Carausius,  a  man 
of  low  origin,  but  bold  in  counsel  and  action,  had  the  si^r- 
intendence  of  the  shores  of  the  ocean  which  were  infested 
by  the  [Franks  and  Saxons.  But  his  administration  was 
nwMre  to  the  loss  than  the  advantage  of  the  state ;  for  he 
applied  the  pkmder  taken  from  the  pirates  to  his  own  pri- 
vate use,  instead  of  restoring  it  to  the  owners,  and  he  was 
suspected  of  allowing  the  aiemy  opportunities  of  making 
incursions  by  designed  negligence.  His  execution  for 
these  delinquencies  having  been  ordered  by  Maximian, 
Carausius  seized  Britain,  assmning  the  purple,  and  main- 
tained his  power  for  seven  years  with  great  det^mination 
and  courage.  At  length,  he  was  slain  by  Allectus,  one  of 
his  followers,  who,  usurping  the  government,  retained  it  for 
three  years,  until  the  prefect  Aselepiodotus  vanquished  him 
in  his  palace,  and  recovered  Britain  after  a  revolt  of  ten 
years.  In  consequence  of  the  wars,  the  emperors  asso- 
ciated with  themsehres  Constantius  in  the  West,  and  Gale- 
rius  Maximus  in  the  East.  In  their  time  a  most  cruel  per- 
secution of  the  Christians  raged  throughout  the  world.  In^ 
the  course  of  it  St  Alban  devoted  himself  a  sacrifice  to 

'  Eatrop.  iz.  11. 


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AD.  805.]  8AIHT  JLLBAS. — DIOCIJCCIAK.  ftT 

God ;  of  vrhom  Fortonatiis,  in  his  poem  m  praise  of  vir- 
gimlj,  Hxaa  speaks : — 

^  The  nmted  Albon  frniffut  Bintain  bean.* 

He  was  a  citizen  of  Yerulam,  who  gave  shelter  to  a  priest 
escaping  from  the  Pagans,  and  having  been  converted  by  him 
while  he  lay"  concealed,  offered  himself  in  his  stead  when 
the  persecutors  came  to  search  the  house.     Having  been 
subjected  to  torture,  Alban  was  led  out  to  be  beheaded. 
Then  the  river  was  dried  up,  at  the  prayer  of  the  saint,, 
because  the  concourse  was  too  great  for  the  people  to  cro8& 
the  bridge.  When  the  executioner,  among  odiers,  witnessed 
this,  he   threw  himself  at  his  feet,  believing,  and  was 
martyred  with  him.    A  fountain  also  burst  forth  at  his- 
martyrdom,  which  was  afterwards  dried  up.     Moreover,  the 
eyes  of  the  headsman  rolled  on  the  ground  with  the  head 
of  the  saint     St.  Alban  was  marked  near  Yerulam,  t.  e, 
Wirlameester  or  Wadlingcester,  wh^:e  afterwards  a  mag- 
nificent church,  vrith  a  noble  abbey,  were  erected ;  and  to 
this  day  the  sick  are  cured  and  miracles  wrou^t.     There 
suffered  dming  the  same  persecution  two  citizens  of  Caerle(ui» 
Aaron  and  Julius,  vrith  a  multitude  of  both  sexes  who  bore 
witness  to  Almighty  God  when  torn  limb  from  limb,  and 
exposed  to  unheard-of  tortures.     So  violent  was  the  perse- 
cution, that  in  the  course  of  one  month,  17,000  martyrs 
suffered  for  Christ's  sake.     But  when  Diocletian  had  laid 
aside  the  purple  at  Kicomedia,  and  Maximian  at  Milan,  in 
the   twentieth  year  of  their  reign,   the  persecution  was 
abated  for  a  time.     Arrius  thus  writes  of  Diocletian '.^ 
"  He  was  shrewd,  but  crafty,  and  of  a  sagacious,  thou^ 
subtle  spirit ;  disposed,  witlLal,  to  vent  his  own  ill  humours 
in  malice  towards  other  people.     Still  he  was  a  most  in- 
dustrious and  politic  prince,  though^  contrary  to  the  free 
habits  of  the  Bomans,  he  required  them  to  adore  him, 
whereas  his  predecessors  had  only  been  sahited.     He  wore 
jewels  OD  his  robes  and  sandals,  and  yet  with  unprecedented 
self-denial,  he  abdicated  his  lofty  rank  for  a  private  station. 
There  occurred  in  his  case,  what  had  never  before  been  known 
since  the  existence  of  man,  that  a  private  individual  received 
divine  honours.     His  coadjutor,  Maximian,  was  a  prince  of 
a  most  cruel  disposition  and  a  most  forbidding  aspect"  ^ 
1  Eatrop.  ix.  16, 


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d8  HENBY  OF  HUNTINODON.  [BOOK  I. 

Constantius,  who,  under  the  late  emperors,  ruled  Gaul, 
Britain,  and  Spain,  for  fifteen  years,  continued  his  reign  for 
one  year  afterwards  over  the  whole  empire  in  the  West, 
Maximin  heing  emperor  in  the  East.  He  foimded  Cou- 
tances  in  that  part  of  Gaul  which  is  now  called  Normandy, 
and  received  in  marriage  the  daughter  of  the  British  king 
of  Colchester,  whose  name  was  Hoel  or  Helen,  our  Saint 
Helena,  hy .  whom  he  had  Constantine  the  Great.  Con- 
stantius, a  great  and  accomplished  prince,  died  at  York. 
"  He  was  studious  to  advance  the  prosperity  of  the  pro- 
vinces and  of  private  individuals ;  he  was  imwilling  to  avail 
himself  of  the  power  of  taxing  them  severely,  saying  that 
the  public  wealth  was  better  in  individual  hands  than  locked 
up  in  a  single  coflfer.  His  own  expenses  were  moderate, 
his  temper  gentle.  He  was  not  only  beloved,  but  venerated, 
by  the  Gauls." ^ 

Constantine,  who  reigned  thirty  years  and  ten  months, 
was  the  flower  of  Britain ;  for  he  was  British  both  by  birth 
and  coimtry ;  and  Britain  never  produced  his  equal,  before 
or  afterwards.  He  led  an  army  fi'om  Britain  and  Gaul  into 
Italy,  for  Moximian  had  proclaimed  Maximin  his  son 
Augustus  at  Kome.  When  marching  against  him,  being 
yet  a  heathen,  he  beheld  an  angel  of  God  exhibiting  to  him 
the  sign  of  the  cross,  and  calling  upon  him  to  have  faith  in 
the  Crucified,  and  he  believed  instancy,  and  God  overwhelmed 
Msixentius  in  the  river's  flood.  Constantine  then,  having 
twice  overcome  Maximian  in  battle,  became  sole  emperor  of 
the  world,  and  having  been,  as  we  find  it  written,  cleansed 
from  his  leprosy  by  St.  Sylvester  in  the  water  of  baptism, 
he  foimded  at  Rome,  on  the  spot  where  he  was  baptized,  the 
Basilica  of  John  the  Baptist,  which  is  called  the  Constantine 
church.  He  also  founded  the  basilica  of  St.  Peter  and  St.  Paul, 
on  the  site  of  the  temple  of  Apollo,  surroimding  their  bodies 
with  a  tomb  of  brass  ^ye  feet  in  breadth.  He  also  foimded 
a  basilica  in  the  Sosorian  Palace,  which  is  named  Jerusalem, 
where  he  deposited  a  piece  of  the  wood  of  the  cross. '  He 
also  dedicated  a  basilica  to  St.  Laurence,  on  the  land  of 
Veranus,  near  the  Tiburtine  Eoad;  and  another,  on  the 
Lavican  Way,  to  Peter  and  Marcellus,  martyrs ;  where  he 

'  Bntrop.  X.  L 


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A.D.  307.]  CONSTANTINE. — JULIAN.  29 

fixed  the  mausoleum  of  his  mother,  with  a  sarcophagus  of 
red  marble.  He  also  founded  a  church  at  Ostia,  near  the 
Eoman  gate;  with  one  at  Albano,  dedicated  to  St.  John 
Baptist ;  and  another  in  the  city  of  Naples.  Constantino 
foimded  a  city,  called  after  his  own  name,  in  Thrace,  which 
he  made  the  seat  of  the  imperial  power  and  the  capital  of 
the  East*.  Kebuilding  the  city  of  Deprana  in  Bithynia,  in 
honour  of  the  martyr  Lucian,  who  was  there  buried,  he 
changed  its  name  to  Helenopolis,  in  memory  of  his  mother. 
Tradition  says  that  Helen,  the  illustrious  daughter  of 
Britain,  smroimded  London  with  the  wall  which  is  still 
standing,  and  fortified  Colchester  also  with  walls.  But  more 
especially  she  rebuilt  Jerusalem,  adorning  it  with  many 
basilica  purified  firom  idols.  The  praises  of  Constantino^ : 
"  Constantino  may  be  compared  to  the  best  princes  of  the  first 
age  of  the  empire ;  to  the  ordinary  ones  of  the  last.  His 
natural  endowments  both  of  mind  and  body  were  brilliant. 
Baised  to  the  highest  pitch  of  military  glory  and  fortune,  he 
devoted  himself  assiduously  to  the  ai'ts  of  peace  and  liberal 
studies.  He  was  distinguished  for  cultivating  a  sincere  re- 
gard for  his  fiiends ;  but  the  pride  of  his  great  prosperity 
tended  in  some  degree  to  diminish  that  amiable  disposition." 
Constantius,  with  whom  were  associated  his  brothers  Con- 
stantine  and  Constans,  reigned  twenty-four  years  and  five 
months.  The  Arian  heresy,  patronized  by  Constantius, 
caused  many  and  great  troubles  to  the  Catholics. 

Julian,  the  Apostate,  who  reigned  two  years  and  eight 
months,  justly  perished,  as  the  enemy  of  God,  in  fighting 
with  the  barbarians.  His  eulogy  by  Paulus^:  "He  re- 
sembled Marcus  Antoninus,  who  was  fhe  object  of  his  emula- 
tion. His  learning  was  profound  and  extensive,  his  memory 
powerftd  and  comprehensive,  his  eloquence  prompt  and 
fertile,  such  as  become  a  philosopher.  Courteous  to  aU,  he 
was  covetous  of  glory  to  a  degree  that  firequently  overpowered 
his  natural  equanimity."  Jovian,  an  excellent  and  pious 
emperor,  reigned  only  eight  months;  a  premature  death 
cutting  short  his  early  promise.  Valentinian,  with  his 
brother  Valens,  possessed  the  imperial  authority  only  two 

'  Constantinople^  the  ancient  Byzantium. 
'  Eatrop.  X.  i  ^  Hist  Misoell. 


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so  HEHHT  OF  HTTHmNGDON.  [bOOK  F. 

jeaiB.  His  character  is  ihus  described  in  the  history  of 
Pankis :  "  Resembling  Anrelian,  his  aspect  was  comely,  his 
wit  shrewd,  his  judgment  sound ;  he  was  austere,  impetuous, 
a  great  enemy  to  vice,  especially  to  avarice.  He  was  skilful 
in  painting  beautiftdly,  in  designing  new  implCTttents  of  art, 
jmd  in  modelling  statues  both  in  wax  and  in  plaster.  His 
discourse  was  polished,  sagacious,  and  astute.*" 

Valens,  with  his  brothers  Gratian  and  Valentinian,  sons 
of  his  brother  just  named,  reigned  four  years.  Having 
been  bi^tized  by  the  Arians,  he  persecuted  the  Christians, 
and  issued  a  decree  that  monks  should  serve  as  soldiers, 
and  those  who  refused  i^iould  be  scourged  to  death.  In 
tMs  reign  the  nation  of  the  Huns  issued  suddenly  from 
their  mountain  fastnesses,  and  threw  themselves  on  the 
C9k)th6,  routing  and  expelling  them  from  their  ancient  seats. 
Tbe  Gotibis,  who  fled  across  the  Danube,  were  received  by 
¥akns,  wstiiout  bdng  disarmed ;  but  afterwards  a  famine, 
occiteioned  by  the  avarice  of  MajdmtB,  the  governor,  having 
driven  them  to  rebellion,  they  d^eated  the  army  of  ¥alens, 
«nd  oveiran  all  Thrace  with  daughter,  fire,  and  rapine, 
ijratian  continued  for  six  years^  from  a.d.  877,  the  reign 
which  he  had  commenced  jointly  witk  his  uncle  Valens. 
Drivai  by  necessily  in  tiie  troubled  and  weil-nigh  ruined 
ctate  of  the  republic,  he  invested  with  the  pinple,  at  Sermia, 
Theodosius,  a  Bpaniard,  allotting  to  him  Thrace  and  the 
East  for  his  share  of  the  empire.  Theodosius,  in  several 
campaigns,  reduced  the  great  Be3rthian  nations,  the  Alani, 
the  Htms,  and  the  Goths.  Meanwhile,  Maximus,  who  was 
of  British  origin,  an  active  and  meritorious  officer,  except 
that  he  broke  his  oath  of  allegiance  and  declared  himself 
emperor  in  Britain,  passed  into  Gaul,  and  by  a  sudden 
attack  destroyed  Gratian,  the  Augustus,  and  then  expelled 
fpom  Italy  his  brother  Valentinian,  also  Augustus,  who  took 
reftige  with  "Elieodosius  in  the  East.  The  eulogy  of 
Oratian  ^ :  "  He  was  not  wanting  in  erudition,  wrote  verses, 
-and  discoursed  elegantiy,  devoting  his  days  and  ni^ts  to 
apply  the  keen  edge  of  rhetorical  disquisition  to  questions 
of  the  deepest  interest.  Sparing  of  food  and  sleep,  he  con- 
trolled his  passions." 

'  Hist  MiscelL 


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jlj>.  379.]  THEODOssnrs.  31 

Theodosius,  a£ber  the  death  of  Gratian,  reigned  eleven 
years  jointly  with  Valentinian,  whom  he  reinstated,  having 
akat  up  within,  the  walls  of  Aqmleia,  and  slain,  the  t3^cant 
'Maarimiis.  The  Bdtons  who  followed  Maxinms  remain  to 
-iboB  day  in  Armoncan  Oaul,  to  Ihe  great  loss  of  Britain : 
.^0  liuit  the  Armoricans  are  now  called  Bietons.  The  praise 
<Kf  Theodos^us :  *'  His  defence  and  extension  of  the  empire 
jsemd^red  him  illustricms.  ELe  resembled  Trajan,  ^m 
whom  he  was  descaided,  both  in  di^EK>sition  and  person,  as 
iwe  kam  both  £t»n  ancient  wntings  and  portraits.  He  was 
tiikd  him  in  being  tall  in  stature,  in  the  shape  of  his  limbs, 
sod  ihe  colour  of  his  hair;  but  Ms  eyes  were  not  so  full, 
but  perhaps  there  was  not  so  mudi  grace  and  gaiety  in  his 
countenance,  nor  so  muph  dignity  in  his  motions.  But  in 
disposition  so  great  was  the  resemblance,  that  there  is 
nothing  which  iSie  old  writers  say  of  Tr^an  which  does  not 
apply  to  Theodosius.  Declaring  that  he  only  diflfered  from 
other  men  in  the  accidents  of  his  rank,  he  was  pitiful  to  the 
unfortunate,  respect^  to  all,  having  the  highest  regaixi  for 
tbe  good.  He  loved  men  of  ingenuous  dispositions,  and 
iMhuired  men  of  learning,  being  liberal  in  his  boimty  to 
liuMie  most  worthy  of  it.  The  faults  whidi  stained  the 
dbsn^ter  of  Trs^an,  excessive  conviviality  and  lust  of 
wtory,  he  so  detested,  that  he  never  engaged  in  war  unless 
compelled,  and  made  an  edict  prohibiting  lascivious  exhibi- 
tions and  female  dancers  at  entertainments.  He  was  bnt 
mod^Tiately  learned,  but  had  a  large  share  of  oomnum  sense, 
jmd  d^ghted  in  becoming  aoqaainted  with  the  acts  of  his 
foedecessors,  execrai(ang  &e  perfidy  and  the  heartlessness 
<f£  diose  who  were  haxtghty  tyrants ;  for  he  was  easily  moved 
to  aiDger  by  unworthy  actions,  though  quickly  ai^)eased.  He 
•bad  ^e  rme  ^mmt  of  making  restitution  in  many  instances 
J:om  his  own  fortinae  of  the  wealth  which  in  the  course  of 
years  tyrannical  emperors  had  wrtmgfrom  private  individuals. 
He  regarded  his  uncle  in  the  light  of  a  father ;  his  nephews 
"and  cousins  as  sons.  He  invited  to  his  table  men  of  worth 
and  eminence,  engaging  them  in  familiar  conversation,  in 
which  sense  was  seasoned  with  an  agreeable  hilarity.  A 
kind  father  and  a  loving  husband,  he  preserved  his  health 
by  an  abstemious  diet  and  moderate  exercise.     Thus  kind 


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32  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  I» 

and  gentle  to  man,  his  devotion  to  God  was  still  more 
exemplary."^ 

Arcadius,  the  son  of  Theodosius,  reigned  thirteen  years 
jointly  with  his  brother  Honorius.  Dimng  their  reign,  the 
Goths  invaded  Italy,  the  Vandals  and  Alaric  Gaul,  Then 
also  Pelagius  in  Britain  ^  and  Julian  in  Campania,  plai^ted 
widely  the  seeds  of  that  heresy  which  Saint  Augustine  and 
many  other  orthodox  fathers  attacked  with  innumerajble 
authorities  from  CathoUc  writers,  without  succeeding  in 
correcting  their  folly.  Indeed  their  assurance  seemed 
rather  to  be  augmented  by  the  controversy,  than  to  be 
abated  by  listening  to  the  truth.  Whence  the  rhetorician 
Prosper  poetically  says : — 

"  Insidious,  with  the  serpent's  hellish  spite, 
A  scribbler  'gainst  Augustine  dar'd  to  write  ; 
Sure  he  was  fed  on  Britain's  sea-girt  plains. 
Or  else  Campanian  plenty  swell'd  his  veins." 

Honorius  reigned  fifteen  years  with  Theodosius  the 
younger,  son  of  his  brother  Arcadius.  In  whose  times, 
when  the  Alani,  the  Suevi,  and  the  Vandals  desolated  all 
Gaul,  Gratian  was  elevated  to  the  provincial  sovereignty 
of  Britain,  but  was  speedily  killed.  In  his  stead  was  elected 
Constantine,  a  man  taken  from  the  lowest  ranks  of  the 
army,  and  having  no  other  merit  than  the  promise  of  his 
name.  Passing  into  Gaul  to  invade  the  empire,  he  did 
great  mischief  to  the  affairs  of  the  state  by  suffering  himself 
to  be  deluded  by  the  Gauls  into  pretended  treaties,  till  at 
last,  under  the  orders  of  Honorius,  the  Count  Constantine 
shut  him  up  in  the  city  of  Aries,  seized  and  put  him  to 
death.  His  son  also,  Constans,  whom,  from  having  been  a 
monk,  he  had  proclaimed  Csesar,  was  by  the  Coimt  Geron- 
tius  dispatched  at  Vienne.  In  these  times  also,  a.u.o.  1164, 
Alaric,  King  of  the  Goths,  besieged  and  took  Rome,  and 
having  plimdered  the  city  and  binned  part  of  it,  evacuated 
it  after  six  days.     This  happened  about  470  years  after 

»  Hist.  Miscell. 

'  Pelagius  was  of  British  extraction,  being  a  native  of  Wales.  His 
patronymic  name  seems  to  have  been  Morgan,  in  Welsh  sea-bom,,  Pelagius 
{Tltk^ytas)  signifying  the  same  in  Greek. 


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A.t).  412-421.]      INCUB8I0NS  OF  PICT8  AND  SCOTS.  3& 

Jiilius  Csesar  Subdued '  Britain.     The  Bomans  had  setded 
its  southern  region  within  the  wall  built  by  Severus,  as  the 
remains  of  their  cities,  bridges,  watch-towers,  and  roads, 
testify  to  this  day.     They  also  claimed  the  dominion  of  the 
parts  of  Britain  beyond  the  wall,  and  the  neighbouring 
islands.     The  Roman  forces  being  thus  withdrawn  from 
Britain,  with  the  flower  of  her  youth,  who    principally 
followed  the  tyrant  Maximus,  the  rest  being  exhausted  by 
the  expedition  of  Constantine  just  before  named,  the  pro- 
vince lay  open  to  the  incursions  of  those  barbarous  tribes 
the  Scots  and  Picts.     It  was  separated  from  them  by  two 
friths,  or  arms  of  the  sea,  one  entering  from  the  east,  the 
other  from  the  west,  which  approach  each  other  very  nearly 
without  forming  a  jimction.    About  the  middle  of  the 
eastern  frith  lies  the  city  of  Guidi ;  the  western  frith  has 
on  its  further,  i.  e,  its  right  shore,  the  city  called  Alcluith*, 
which  in  their  language  signifies  the  rock  Cluith,  and  near 
it  is  a  river  of  the  same  name'.     Terrified  by  the  inroads 
of  these  fierce  tribes,  the  Britons  sent  messengers  to  Rome 
bearing  letters   imploring    assistance.      One   legion  was 
marched  to  their  aid,  which,  after  slaughtering  vast  numbers 
of  the  enemy,  drove  the  rest  beyond  ttie  border,  and  retired 
in  great  triumph.     It  was  recommended  to  the  Britons  to 
build  a  wall  of  stone  on  the  rampart  of  Severus,  so  that  they 
might  be  defended  by  it  where  the  protection  of  the  friths 
fldled.    But  as  they  constructed  it  with  turf  instead  of  stone, 
it  answered  no  good  purpose.     The  remains  of  this  wall, 
which  was  of  great  height  as  well  as  breadth,  may  be  seen 
at  the  present  time.     It  commences  about  two  miles  from 
a  place  called  Peneltune*,  and  terminates  westward  near  the 
city  of  Alcluith.    As  soon  as  the  enemy  heard  that  the 
Romans  were  withdrawn,  they  embarked  in  boats  and  made 
a  Btill  more  fierce  irruption.    Again  the  Romans  returned 

>  Henry  of  Huntiiigdon,  who  is  following  Bede>  changes  the  expression 
of  his  author,  which  runs,  ''after  Julius  CsBsar  entered  the  island.''  Bede 
adds,  ''from  this  time  the  Bomans  ceased  to  rule  in  Britain." 

'  Alcluith  is  now  Dumbarton.  The  situation  of  Guidi  is  not  exactly 
known;  but  from  the  description  it  must  be  somewhere  about  Leith  or 
Queensferry. 

»  The  Clyde. 

*  Near  Abereom  (Abercumig),  a  village  on  the  south  bank  of  the  Frith  of 
I'oHh,  where  formerly  was  a  monastery. 


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34  HSNBT  OF  HUNTnroDoir.  [book  I. 

at  the  prayer  of  the  Britons,  and  drove  the  barbarians  with 
great  slaughter  ov^  the  Mth.  Thej  also  aided  the  Britons 
in  constructing  the  wall  of  stone,  not  as  before  of  turf^  and 
carrying  it  from  one  sea  to  the  other.  They  also  built  at 
intervals  on  the  southern  shore  watch-towers^  from  which 
the  approach  of  the  enemy  might  be  discerned.  Theti 
they  bid  farewell  to  their  alHes,  giving  them  to  understand 
that  they  should  return  no  more,  for  they  could  not  exhaust 
themselves  in  such  distant  expediti(His.  When  the  Eoman 
forces  were  thus  withdrawn,  ^e  enemy  again  flew  to  arms^ 
and  possessed  themselves  of  all  itte  island  as  fiEir  as  the 
wall.  Nor  was  it  long  before  they  laid  that  in  ruins,  as  well 
as  the  neighbouring  towns.  They  soon  began  to  devastate 
the  country  within  the  wall,  so  that  the  Britons  themselves 
were  driven  by  famine  to  resort  to  thieving  and  plimder^ 
and  nothing  was  left  in  the  whole  country  for  the  sustenance 
of  life,  but  what  was  procured  by  hunting.  The  eulogy  of 
Honorius :  "  In  his  moral  and  religious  character  he  greatly 
resembled  his  father  Theodosius,  and,  althou^  in  his  times 
there  were  many  wars,  both  foreign  and  civil,  they  occa- 
sioned a  very  small  effiision  of  blood." 

Theodosius  II.,  also  called  the  Younger,  lost  the  do- 
minion of  Britain.  He  held,  however,  the  empire  of  the  Bo- 
mans  28  years.  In  the  twenty-third  year  of  his  reign,  ^tius, 
an  illustrious  man,  was  Ck>nsul  together  with  Synmiachus. 
To  him  the  remnant  of  the  Britons  transmitted  an  epistle ; 
in  the  sequel  of  which  (addressed  "to  iEtius,  Consul  for 
the  third  time")  they  thus  imfold  their  lamentable  story: 
"  The  barbarians  drive  us  to  the  sea,  the  sea  throws  us  back 
to  the  b^barians;  between  both  we  have  the  choice  of 
death  in  two  shapes,  either  to  be  massacred  or  drowned." 
But  their  prayers  were  of  no  avail;  Miius  could  i^ord 
them  no  relief,  as  he  was  at  this  time  embarrassed  by 
serious  wars  with  Bledda  and  Attila,  kings  of  the  Huns. 
And  although  the  year  afterwards  Bledda,  the  brother  of 
Attila,  fell  into  an  ambush  and  was  slain,  Attila  was  him- 
self so  formidable  an  enemy  to  the  republic  that  he  laid 
waste  nearly  the  whole  of  Europe,  overthrowing  everywhere 
cities  and  castles.  At  the  same  time  a  severe  famine  pre- 
vailed at  Constantinople,  followed  by  a  pestilence,  and 
great  part  of  the  city  walls,  with  56  towers,  fell  down.     So 


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AJ).  421-448.]   TH£  BIUTONB  LEFT  TO  XmsaiSELTES.  96 

also  in  many  of  tbe  ruined  cities  famine  and  a  pestiferous 
atmosphere  destrc^ed  thousands  both  of  mesi  and  of  beasts. 
The  famine  aSeeted  Britain,  as  well  as  the  rest  of  the  pro- 
yinces,  so  that  the  Britons,  perceiving  ibsi  aU  human  aid 
&iled,  invoked  the  divine.  Then  tibe  Almighty,  having 
tried  them,  had  compassion  on  them,  giving  strength  to 
their  arms  and  point  to  thaur  swords.  They  borst,  thero- 
fDre,  from  their  fastnesses  in  the  mountains  and  the  woods, 
and,  rushing  on  the  Scots  and  Picts,  routed  and  slew  them 
in  every  quarter;  while  the  ^lemy's  assaults  wete  no  longer 
what  they  had  been,  and  their  arms  were  &eble,  opposed  to 
those  of  the  Britons.  Thus  their  heart  failed  thean,  their 
strength  was  broken,  and  they£ed  in  their  terror,  great 
numbers  being  slaughtered.  The  Scots,  with  shame,  re- 
turned to  Ireland;  fiie  Picts,  seeking  refuge  in  the  re- 
motest parts  of  the  island,  then  first  and  for  ever  discon- 
tinned  ^eir  inroads.  Thus  the  Lord  gave  victory  to  his 
pec^le,  and  confounded  their  enemies.  About  this  time, 
t.  e,  in  the  eighth  year  of  Theodosius,  Palladius  was  sent 
by  Pope  Oelestine  to  ih/d  Beoi&,  as  their  £rst  bishop. 
Theodosius  also  lost  Ihe  dominion  of  Oaul,  Spain,  and 
A&ica,  which  the  Yandals,  the  Alans,  and  the  Goths  laid 
waste  all  lands  with  fire  and  sword.  In  the  third  year  of 
the  siege  of  Hippo  by  the  fierce  Genseric,  Augustine, 
its  bishop,  departing  in  the  Lord,  was  spared  the  grief  of 
vdtnessing  its  fall. 

After  the  victory  of  the  Britons  had  restored  peace,  they 
were  blessed  with  an  harvest  of  such  extraordinary  abim- 
dance  as  was  in  the  memory  of  no  prior  times,  so  that  as 
their  triiunph  had  restored  order,  this  plenty  relieved  the 
famine;  the  Almighty  making  trial  whether,  when  adver- 
sity had  failed  to  correct  them,  prosperity  would  render 
them  thankful.  But  excess  was  followed  by  every  kind  of 
wickedness,  without  respect  of  God ;  and  so  much  did 
barbarism  and  malice  and  falsehood  prevail,  that  whoever 
manifested  a  more  gentle  and  truthfiil  disposition  was  con- 
sidered the  enemy  of  Britain,  and  became  the  common 
mark  for  hatred  and  persecution.  Not  only  secular  men,  but 
the  pastors  of  the  Lord's  flock,  casting  off  his  light  and 
easy  yoke,  became  the  slaves  of  drunkenness,  revenge, 
htigious  contention,  animosities,  and  every  kind  of  wicked- 


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86  HENBT  OP  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  I. 

ness.  Then  the  anger  of  the  Lord  was  moved,  and  He 
visited  the  corrupt  race  with  a  terrible  plague,  which  in  a 
short  time  carried  oflf  such  great  multitudes  that  those 
who  siurived  scarcely  sufficed  to  biuy  the  dead.  But  not 
even  the  sight  of  death,  nor  the  fear  of  death,  were  suffi- 
cient to  recall  the  survivors  from  the  more  fatal  death  of 
the  soul  into  which  their  sins  had  plunged  them.  The 
righteous  judgment  of  God  was  therefore  openly  shown 
in  his  determination  to  destroy  the  sinful  nation  ;  and  He 
stirred  up  against  them  the  Scots  and  Picts,  who  were 
ready  to  avenge  their  former  losses  by  still  fiercer  attacks. 
They  rushed  on  the  Britons,  like  wolves  against  lambs, 
driving  them  again  into  the  fastnesses  of  the  woods  in 
which  it  was  their  custom  to  take  refuge.  There  they  took 
counsel  what  was  to  be  done,  and  in  what  quarter  protec- 
tion was  to  be  sought  against  these  repeated  irruptions  of 
the  northern  tribes.  It  was  agreed,  therefore,  by  common 
consent,  with  the  concurrence  of  their  king  Vortigem,  that 
the  nation  of  the  Saxons  should  be  invited  to  come  to  their 
aid  from  over  the  sea ;  a  counsel  disposed  by  divine  Pro- 
vidence to  the  end  that  punishment  should  follow  the  wicked, 
as  the  issue  of  events  sufficiently  proved. 


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JU>«  440.1  ABBIYAL  OF  THE  SAXONS.  37 


BOOK  n.i 

In  the  former  book  we  have  treated  of  the  forty-five  emperors 
who  reigned  m  Britam,  as  well  as  the  rest  of  the  world,  of 
whom,  if  any  now  possess  heavenly  glory,  it  is  because  they 
are  no  longer  in  possession  of  earthly.  Our  discourse  of 
them  has  indeed  been  meagre,  but  a  longer  narrative  of 
their  actions  would  have  been  wearisome,  tedious,  and 
disgusting.  Let  us  rather  reflect,  from  the  contemplation 
of  those  for  whose  majesty  and  dominion  the  whole  world 
barely  sufficed,  how  worthless  is  all  'the  gloiy  and  power 
and  loftiness  for  which  men  toil  and  sweat  and  are  framtic. 
K  they  desire  glory  (I  speak  after  the  manner  of  men),  let 
them  seek  that  which  is  true ;  if  fame,  that  which  does  not 
vanish ;  if  honour,  that  which  will  not  fade :  not  that  of 
the  emperors  we  have  spoken  of,  all  whose  glory  is  now 
empty  tale.  That  true  glory  and  fame  and  honour  will  be 
oiuB,  if  we  follow  Him  who  alone  is  the  Truth  with  joy 
and  gladness,  and  if  we  rest  our  whole  trust  and  hope  in 
God,  and  not  on  the  children  of  men,  as  the  Britons  did, 
who,  rejecting  Him,  and  having  no  fear  of  his  great  ma- 
jesty, sought  for  aid  from  Pagans,  and  obtained  t^t  whii " 
befitted  them. 

For  the  nation  of  the  Saxons  or  Angles,  being  invited  by 
the  aforesaid  king,  crossed  over  to  Britain,  in  three  long 
ships,  in  the  year  of  grace  449^,  when  Martian  and  Vale- 
rian, who  reigned  seven  years,  were  emperors,  and  in  the 
twenty-fourth  year  after  the  foundation  of  the  kingdom  of 

^  Tliis  Second  Book  of  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  History  is  principally 
founded  on  Bede,  with  the  assistance  occasionally  of  the  Saxon  Chronicle. 
It  rehites  the  arrival  of  the  Saxons  and  Angles  in  Britain,  and  the  establish- 
ment, teruUim,  of  the  several  kingdoms  of  the  Heptarchy,  the  history  of 
whidi  it  purines  to  the  year  685,  when  all  the  Snglish  kings  and  nationi 
bad  been  converted  to  Ohristiamty. 

^  See  Bede,  book  L  c  15. 


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88  HENBT  OF  HTJNTIKGBOH.  [BOOK  XX. 

the  Franks,  of  whom  Pharamond  was  the  first  king.  The 
Saxons,  therefore,  were  settled  by  the  British  king  in  the 
eastern  part  of  the  island,  that  thus  they  might  fight  for  a 
country  which  was  to  become  their  own,  while  in  truth 
their  object  was  to  subjugate  the  whole. 

A  battle  was  fought  by  the  Saxons  against  the  Scots  and 
Picts,  who  had  penetrated  as  fkr  as  Stamford  \  in  the  south 
of  Lincolnshire,  40  miles  from,  the  town  of  that  name. 
Bot  as  the  KortbeamB  fou^  with  darts  and  spears,  yrbjle 
&e  Saxons  plied  hisiify  £eir  battle-axes  and  long  sword^ 
the  Plots  w&ce  xmntle  to  withstand  the  weight  of  their 
oxiflet»  and  saved  themaehres  by  fiight  The  Saxons  gained 
&e  vietoiy  waod  its  q>oils;  their  countrymen  receiving 
l^bngs  of  whidii,  as  weil  as  of  the  fertility  of  the  island 
and  tiie  eowardioe  of  the  Britons,  a  larger  fleet  was  imme- 
diately sent  oirer  with  a  greater  hod^  g£  armed  men»  whieh, 
wiien  added  to  the  first  detachm^dt,  rendered  the  armj 
inTiDeible.  The  new  cosners  received  from  the  Britons  an 
allotment  of  territory  on  the  terms  that  they  should  defend 
bj  samB  the  peaee  and  security  of  the  countiy  agunst  their 
caiemies,  while  the  Britons  ^agaged  to  pay  the  auxiliary 
Ibrce.  The  immigrants  belonged  to  three  of  &e  most  power- 
ful nations  of  Germaay,  liie  Saxons,  the  Angles,  and  Jutes. 
From  the  Jutes  sprung  the  people  oi  Kent  and  the  Isle  of 
Wi^kt»  with  those  who  are  sdll  called  Jutes  in  the  province 
ci  the  West  Saxoms^  opposite  to  the  Isle  of  Wight  From 
the  Saxons,  that  is^  from  the  countiy  which  is  now  dis- 
t&nguiahed  as  that  of  the  Old  Saxons,  are  descended  the  East 
Saxons,  the  South  Saxons,  and  the  West  Saxons.  From 
^e  An^s,  that  is,  the  people  d*  the  countiy  called  Angle, 
which  hm  remained  a  desert  from  that  time  to  the  present, 
and  is  situated  between  the  districts  of  the  Jutes  and  tlie 
Saxons,  are  descended  the  East  Angles,  Hbe  Middle  An- 
glians,  the  Mercians,  all  the  race  of  the  Northumbrians, 
Qiat  is,  the  tribes  which  settled  to  the  north  of  the  river 
Humber,  with  the  rest  of  the  English  peof^.  Their  prin- 
cipal chiefe  are  reported  to  have  been  two  broth^s,  named 

1  nki  MMimt  of  tiie  bafti«  of  Stamford,  a»d  tbe  fiz«t  Mldomeiit  of  the 
Saxons  in  Britain,  Henry  of  Huntingdon  intiodactft  from  wwm  •tber  tmJ&uh 
ntj,  now  unknown,  into  his  histoiy,  in  which  he  gOMfaHy  fo^wt  Bade; 


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A.D.  450.]  BAYA6ES  OF  THE  SAX0178.  80 

Hengist  and  Horsa,  ^o  were  sons  of  Victgils,  who  was 
son  of  Wicta,  who  was  son  of  Veeta,  who  was  son  of  Woden, 
who  was  son  of  Frealof,  who  was  son  of  Fredulf,  who  was 
son  of  Fin,  who  was  son  of  Flocwald,  who  was  son  of 
Jeta,  who,  they  said,  was  son  of  God,  that  is,  of  some  idol. 
From  this  stock  ihe  royal  race  of  many  nations  derived  its 
origin.  Before  long  such  swarms  of  the  nations  we  have 
just  mentioned  spread  themselves  throughout  the  island, 
that  the  foreign  population  increased  exceedingly,  and  he- 
gan  te  alarm  the  native  inhabitants  who  had  invited  them 
over.  A  certain  author  says  that  King  Vortigem,  fh>m 
apprehension  of  their  power,  married  the  daughter  of  Hen- 
gist,  a  heathen ;  others,  that,  as  a  climax  to  his  wickedness, 
he  married  his  own  daughter,  and  had  a  son  by  her ;  for 
which  he  was  excommunicated  by  St.  Germanus  and  the 
whole  episcopal  synod  ^. 

The  king  Vortigem  was  called  upon  by  his  son-in-law  and 
the  whole  army,  who,  God  permitting,  sought  an  occasion 
for  quarrel,  to  furnish  larger  supplies ;  and  they  threatened 
that,  imless  these  were  forthcoming,  they  would  break  the 
treaty,  and  ravage  the  whole  island.  Nor  were  they  slow  in 
carrying  their  tiuieats  into  execution ;  for  they  formed  an 
alliance  with  the  Picts,  and  having  collected  an  immense 
army  there  remained  no  one  able  to  resist  them.  So  that 
the  fire  kindled  by  the  hands  of  the  Pagans  executed 
the  just  judgment  of  God  for  the  sins  of  the  people,  as 
that  formerty  lighted  by  the  Chaldeeans  consumed  the 
walls  and  buildings  of  Jerusalem.  So  here  by  the  agency 
of  the  heathen  conquercwr,  but  by  the  disposition  of  the 
righteous  Judge,  they  ravaged  the  neighbouring  cities  and 
lands,  and  the  conflagration  extended  from  the  eastern  to 
the  western  sea,  there  being  none  to  oppose  it,  and  spread 
over  almost  the  whole  face  of  the  devoted  island.  PuWic 
and  private  buildings  were  levelled  to  the  ground;  the 
priests  were  everywhere  slain  before  the  altars ;  the  prelates 
and  the  people,  without  respect  of  persons,  were  destroyed 
with  fire  and  sword ;  nor  were  there  any  to  bury  those  who 
were  thus  cruelly  slaughtered.  Some  who  were  taken  in 
the  mountains  were  instantiy  butchered ;  some,  exhausted 

^  See  IfeimliiSy  ec.  87  and  80. 


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40  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOE  II, 

by  famine,  delivered  themselves  up  to  the  enemy,  willing 
to  undergo  perpetaal  slavery  in  return  for  food,  if  they 
escaped  slaughter  on  the  spot.  Some,  with  grief,  sought 
refuge  beyond  the  sea?  otiiers,  cleaving  to  their  native 
country,  prolonged  a  wretched  existence  among  the  moun- 
tsdns,  woods,  and  inaccessible  clifis,  in  want  of  eveiything, 
and  continually  trembling  for  their  lives.  Meanwhile,  the 
king  Yortigem  concealed  himself  in  the  forests  and  moun- 
tain fastnesses  of  the  west  of  Britain,  hated  by  all.  It  is 
reported  S  also,  that  when  the  king  withdrew  himself  to 
avoid  hearing  the  exhortations  of  St.  Germanus,  who  fol- 
lowed him  in  his  flight,  fire  from  heaven  struck  the  castle 
in  which  he  was  secluded,  and  the  king,  perishing  in  the 
ruins,  was  never  more  seen. 

When,  however,  the  army  of  the  Saxons,  having  entirely 
routed  tlie  natives,  returned  to  their  own  territory,  the  Bri- 
tons, emerging  from  their  hiding-places,  began  to  take 
heart,  and,  assembling  a  great  force,  marched  into  Kent 
against  Hengist  and  Horsa.  They  had  for  ibeir  leader  at 
that  time  Ambrosius  Aurelian,  an  able  man,  the  only 
one  of  Eoman  extraction  who  had  chanced  to  survive  the 
late  troubles,  in  which  his  parents,  who  had  been  invested 
with  the  name  and  the  ensigns  of  royalty,  both  perished. 
Two  sons  of  Vortigem,  Goi-timer  and  Catiger,  acted  as 
generals  under  him.  Ambrosius  himself  led  the  first  rank, 
Gortlmer  the  second,  Catiger  the  third ;  while  Horsa  and 
Hengist,  though  their  troops  were  inferior  in  numbers,  led 
them  boldly  against  the  enemy,  dividing  them  into  two  bodies, 
of  which  each  of  the  brothers  commanded  one. 

[a.d.  465.]  The  battle  was  fought  at  Aeillestreu^  in  the 
seventh  year  after  the  arrival  of  tibe  Saxons  in  Britain.  At 
the  first  onset,  Horsa  charged  the  troops  of  Catiger  with 
such  fdiy  that  they  were  scattered  like  dust  before  th^ 
wind,  and  the  king's  son  was  dashed  to  the  earth  and  slain. 
Meanwhile,  his  brother  Gortimer,  a  most  resolute  soldier, 
throwing  himself  on  the  flank  of  Horsa's  band,  routed  it, 
and,  their  brave  leader  being  slain,  compelled  the  sur- 

>  See  Nennhis. 

'  Sax.  Ohron.,  iEgcIestlirep,  "  a  ihorp,  or  village,  near  Ayletford/'  in 
Kent — Ingram,    See  Nenniuii  c.  46,  and  Bede,  btrak  I  c.  16. 


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A  J),  465.]  VICTORY   OF   AlklBROSIUS,  41 

vivors  to  retreat  on  the  division  of  Hengist,  which  was  en* 
gaged  unbroken  with  the  van  of  the  British  army  com- 
manded by  Ambrosias.  The  brunt  of  the  battle  now  fell 
on  Hengist,  who,  straitened  by  the  skilful  advance  of  Gor- 
timer,  ti^ough  he  made  a  long  resistance  and  caused  a 
great  loss  to  the  Britons,  at  length,  what  he  had  never  done 
before,  fled.  It  is  reported  by  some  writers  that  Hengist 
subsequently  fought  three  battles  in  the  same  year  i^ainst 
the  Britons,  but  could  not  make  head  against  the  proved 
valour  of  Gortimer  and  the  superior  nimiber  of  his  forces ; 
so  that  once  he  was  driven  into  the  Isle  of  Thanet  and  once 
to  his  ships,  and  dispatched  messengers  to  recall  the  Saxony 
who  had  returned  to  their  own  coimtry. 

The  year  following,  when  Leo  was  emperor,  who  reigned 
seventeen  years,  Gortimer,  the  flower  of  the  youth  of  Britain, 
fell  sick  and  died,  and  with  him  ended  the  victories  and  the 
hopes  of  his  coimtiymen.  Encouraged  by  his  death,  and 
strengthened  by  the  recall  of  his  auxiliaries,  who  had  for  a 
time  left  the  island,  Hengist,  with  his  son  Esc,  prepared 
for  war  at  Creganford^;  while  the  Britons  mustered  four 
powerful  bodies  of  men,  under  four  of  their  bravest  chiefs'*. 
But  when  the  game  of  war  commenced  they  were  disheart* 
ened  by  the  unusual  superiority  of  the  Saxons  in  number. 
Besides  the  newly-arrived  were  chosen  troops,  who  dread* 
folly  gashed  the  bodies  of  the  Britons  with  their  battle-axes 
and  long  swords ;  nor  was  there  any  respite  tiU  they  had 
cut  down  and  slain  all  the  four  leaders,  and  the  Britons 
fled  in  the  greatest  terror  out  of  Thanet,  as  far  as  London. 
They  never  again  appeared  in  arms  in  Kent,  where  Hen- 
gist and  his  son  Esc  thenceforth  reigned,  the  kingdom  of 
Kent  dating  from  the  eighth  year  after  the  arrived  of  the 
Angles. 

In  those  times  [a.d.  429]  Germanus,  bishop  of  Auxerre, 
who  was  illustrious  for  his  sanctity  and  miraculous  powers, 
together  with  Lupus,  bishop  of  Troyes,  came  into  Britain 

"  Crayford,  the  ford  of  the  river  Cray,  near  Bezley,  in  Kent 
'  The  Saxon  Chronicle  says  nothing  of  this  diyiaion ;  but  states  that  four 
thousand  Britons  were  slain.  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  who  seems  ta  have  had 
before  him  some  of  the  worst  MSS.  of  the  Saxon  Chronicle,  ingenioiuly 
perverts  the  text,  but  very  naturally  kills  the  four  leaders  of  the  four  divi- 
sions he  has  conjured  up. — See  Ingram,  Sax,  Chron* 


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4d  HEKBT  OF  HUMTIROBOK.  [BOOK  n. 

to  eztingtiish  the  Pelagian  heresy.  In  confirmation  of  their 
argmnents,  to  conTince  the  assemhled  people,  he  restored 
sight  to  the  daughter  of  a  trihnne,  i^o  had  heen  blind  t^i 
vears ;  and  he  also  stopped  l^e  burning  of  a  cottage  wrapt 
m  flame,  in  whidi  kj  a  sick  man,  -who  was  thus  rescued 
horn  Hie  conflagration.  He  placed  in  the  tomb  of  St 
Alban  the  relics  of  several  omer  martyrs,  carrying  away 
from  it  a  particle  of  dust  still  red  with  the  blood  of  the 
saint ;  on  the  same  day,  and  at  that  place,  converting  to  the 
Lord  a  vast  crowd  of  people.  Meanwhile,  the  Saxons  and 
PictB  having  united  &eir  forces,  made  war  upon  the  Bri- 
tons, who  implored  the  aid  of  the  holy  Germanus.  The 
saint  promised  to  be  himself  their  leader.  Actiug,  tha*e- 
fore,  as  general,  he  drew  up  the  army  in  a  valley  surrounded 
by  hills,  posting  it  in  the  quarter  at  which  Hie  enemy  was 
expected  to  approach^.  And  now  the  scouts  announced 
that  their  savage  foes  w^e  in  sight  Immediately  the  holy 
man,  raising  the  standard  aloft,  exhorted  them  all  to  repeat 
his  words  vnth  a  loud  voice.  The  enemy  was  advancing 
cardessly,  thinking  to  take  them  by  surprise,  when  tlirice 
he  cried  "  Hallelujah,"  and  thrice  Hie  priests  repeated  it 
Hie  word  was  resounded  by  all  the  people.  Their  shouts 
were  multiplied  by  tiie  echoes  of  the  surrounding  hills,  and 
the  enemy  was  strode  wiHi  terror,  believing  that  not  only 
the  overfmn^g  cHfls,  but  the  veiy  skies  themselves,  were 
Miing  upon  th^n.  Such,  was  their  terror  that  they  fled  in 
disord^ ;  and  i^eir  feet  being  hardly  swift  enough  to  carry 
them  from  the  scene  of  tlieir  alarm  they  threw  away  their 
arms,  well  satisfied  if  they  could  escape  Hie  danga:  with 
only  Hieir  naked  bodies.  Many  in  their  retreat,  Uinded 
by  their  fears,  plunged  into  the  river  which  they  had 
crossed,  and  were  swept  away  by  the  torrent.  The  Britons 
anhurt  looked  on  while  they  were  avenged  of  their  ene- 
mies, and  joyfuQy  collected  Hie  spoils  which  their  heaven- 
wrot^t  victory  had  secured.  The  prelates  exulted  in  a 
triumph  gained  without  bloodshed,  by  faith,  and  not  by 
human  strength.  The  foe  thus  conquered,  the  prelates, 
blessed  boHi  in  body  and  mind,  returned  to  their  own 

^  Tbi§  \mt^  was  fought  aetr  Mold,  in  Flmttliiie;    See  Note  to  Bedels 
Hiftory,  p.  81  of  the  j^etent  •erieiL 


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A.I>.  465.]  BATTLE  OF  EBBFLEET.  48 

country.  Not  long  afterwards,  Hie  Pelagian  heresy  btmrt- 
•ing  forth  again,  Germanus,  at  the  entreaty  of  all  the  inieatB 
of  Britain,  reti:mied  again,  accompanied  by  Sevanis,  Bishop 
of  Treves,  and,  re-establishing  the  orthodox  faith,  healed 
the  son  of  Elafius,  a  chief,  who  was  lame  &om  a  contraetion 
of  ibe  tendcms  d  the  knee,  in  the  sight  of  all  the  people. 
Having  restored  order  he  then  went  to  Bavenna,  to  im- 
plore peace  for  the  Armoriean  nation.  There,  having  been 
received  with  the  greatest  honour  by  Yalentinian,  he  departed 
to  Christ.  Not  long  afterwards  Yalentinian  was  murdered 
by  the  followers  ci  iBthis,  tiie  patrician,  whom  he  had  put 
to  death;  the  same  to  whcmi  the  Britons  addressed  the 
letter  before  quoted.  With  Yalentinian  ended  the  empire  of 
the  West 

After  a  little  time  Hengist  the  king  and  Esc  his  son, 
supported  by  the  auxiliaries  from  beyond  the  sea,  cc^ected 
an  invincible  army  in  the  seventeenth  year  after  their  arrival 
in  Britain'.  Against  this  was  gathered  the  whole  strei^fth  of 
Britain,  in  twelve  columns,  admirably  arrayed.  The  armies 
met  at  Wippedesflede^  where  the  battle  was  long  and  ob- 
stinate, until  at  length  Hengist  overthrew  the  twelve  chiefs^ 
taking  their  standards,  and  putting  their  followers  to  di^A. 
He,  too,  lost  many  of  his  troops  and  principal  leaders ;  one 
especially,  called  Wipped,  from  whom  the  place  where  the 
battle  was  fought  took  its  name.  This  victory  was  there- 
fi>re  a  source  of  regret  and  lamentation  on  both  sides,  so 
that  for  a  long  time  neither  the  Saxons  invaded  the  terri- 
tories of  the  Britons,  nor  the  Britons  ventured  to  come 
into  Kent  But  still,  though  there  was  a  respite  from 
fc»eign,  th^e  wta  none  from  internal,  war^.  Amidst  the 
ruins  c^  the  cities  which  the  enemy  had  destroyed,  the 
inhabitants  ^vdio  had  escaped  the  ruin  fought  with  one 
another.  While,  indeed,  ite  calamities  they  had  suffered 
were  fresh  in  thdr  memories,  both  kings  and  priests, 
^siefs  and  people,  maintained  their  reiq[>ective  ranks;  but 

>  [a.d.  465.]  From  this  date  to  the  year  527,  Henry  of  Hnntrngdon 
introdnces  many  recital^  for  which  it  ii  aot  ksowB  whem^e  he  coileeted 
fluternds. 

*  Wippedfleet,  or  BhMeety  Eenl. 

'  Bede,  book  I  22. 


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44  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  IJ. 

vrhen  a  younger  generation  grew  up,  which  had  no  expe- 
rience beyond  the  present  settled  state  of  affairs,  all  die. 
sanctions  of  truth  and  justice  were  violated  and  sub- 
verted, so  that,  not  to  say  all  traces  of  them,  the  very 
memory  of  their  existence,  remained  to  very  few  indeed. 
God,  therefore,  sent  over  from  time  to  time  from  amongst 
the  German  nations  most  cruel  chiefs,  to  be  destroyers  of 
the  nation  which  was  hateful  to  Him.  Among  the  princi- 
pal of  these  was  the  chief  -Mia,  with  his  three  sons,  Cymen, 
Pleting^  and  Cissa, 

[a.j>.  477.]  .Ella  and  his  sons  having  fitted  out  a  fleet,  in 
which  a  large  body  of  troops  was  embarked,  appeared  off 
Cymenesore'*^  where  their  landing  was  opposed  by  vast 
numbers  of  the  Britons,  who  flew  to  arms  from  the  neigh- 
bouring districts,  and  with  loud  shouts  gave  them  batfle. 
The  Saxons,  who  were  vastly  superior  in  stature  and 
strength,  received  their  attacks  with  much  coolness;  while, 
the  onset  of  the  natives  was  disorderly,  as  rushing  on  with- 
out concert,  and  in  desultory  bands,  they  were  cut  down  by 
the  serried  ranks  of  the  enemy,  and  those  who  escaped  in- 
creased the  conftision  by  reports  of  their  disaster.  The 
defeated  Britons  fled  to  the  shelter  of  the  neighbouring 
forest,  which  is  called  Andredsleige';  while  the  Saxons 
possessed  themselves  of  the  sea-coast  of  Sussex,  continually 
occupying  more  territory  from  time  to  time,  imtil  the  ninl^ 
year  of  their  descent  on  that  coast.  Then,  however,  their 
frullier  advance  was  so  audacious  that  the  kings  and  chiefs 
of  the  Britons  assembled  at  Mercredesbume,  where  they 
fought  a  battle  with  JEM&  and  his  sons.  The  issue  was 
doubtful,  both  annies  being  greatly  crippled  and  thinned, 
and,  vowing  against  a  continuation  of  the  conflict,  retired  to 
their  own  districts,  while  -Mia  sent  messages  to  his  com- 
patriots entreating  aid.  ^Ua  came  into  Britain  about  the 
thirtieth  year  after  the  arrival  of  the  Angles. 

[iLP.  488.]   Hengist,  King  of  Kent,  died  in  the  fortieth 

*  Wlencing. 

^  Shoreham,  in  Sussex ;  some,  however^  place  it  near  Selsey. 

'  The  Anderida  SyWa  of  the  Bomans,  and  Ooed-Andred  of  the  Biitona  ; 
the  vast  forests  of  which  the  wealds  of  Sussex  and  Kent  are  the  present 
remains. 


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A.D.  488-495.]  KINGDOM  OF  SUSSEX.  45 

year  after  his  invasion  of  Britain,  and  his  son  Esc  reigned 
34  years  \  in  the  time  of  the  Emperor  Zeno,  whose  reign 
lasted  17  years.  Esc,  inheriting  his  father's  valour,  firmly 
defended  his  kingdom  against  the  Britons,  and  augmented 
it  by  territories  conquered  from  them. 

[a.d.  490.]  The  kingdom  of  Sussex,  which  -^Ua  founded, 
he  long  and  valiantly  maintained.  In  the  third  year  after 
the  death  of  Hengist,  in  the  time  of  Anastasius,  Emperor 
of  Rome,  who  reigned  27  years,  -^Ua  was  joined  by  aux- 
iliaries from  his  own  country,  with  whose  assistance  he  laid 
siege  to  Andredecester,  a  strongly-fortified  town^.  The 
Britons  swarmed  together  like  wasps,  assailing  the  be- 
siegers by  daily  ambuscades  and  nocturnal  saUies.  There 
was  neither  day  nor  night  in  which  some  new  alarm  did 
not  harass  the  minds  of  the  Saxons ;  but  the  more  they 
were  provoked,  the  more  vigorously  they  pressed  the  siege. 
Whenever  they  advanced  to  the  assault  of  the  town,  &e 
Britons  from  without  falling  on  their  rear  with  their  archers 
and  slingers  drew  the  Pagans  away  from  the  walls  to  resist 
their  own  attack,  which  the  Britons,  lighter  of  foot,  avoided 
by  taking  refuge  in  the  woods ;  and  when  they  turned 
i^ain  to  assault  the  town,  again  the  Britons  hung  on  their 
rear.  The  Saxons  were  for  some  time  harassed  by  these 
manoeuvres,  till,  having  lost  a  great  number  of  men,  they 
divided  their  army  into  two  bodies,  one  of  which  carried  on 
the  siege,  while  the  other  repelled  the  attacks  from  without. 
After  this  the  Britons  were  so  reduced  by  continual  famine 
that  they  were  imable  any  longer  to  withstand  the  force  of 
the  besiegers,  so  that  they  all  fell  by  the  edge  of  the  sword, 
with  their  women  and  children,  not  one  escaping  alive. 
The  foreigners  were  so  enraged  at  the  loss  they  had  sus- 
tained that  they  totally  destroyed  the  city,  and  it  was  never 
afterwards  rebiult,  so  that  its  desolate  site  is  all  that  is  now 
pointed  out  to  travellers. 

[a.d.  495.]  In  the  forty-seventh  year  from  the  arrival  of 

1  Saxon  Chronicle,  24  yesrs. 

^  Saxon  Chronicle.  Pevensey  Castle  is  supposed  to  stand  on  the  site 
of  Andred-cester,  though  some  antiquarians  pkce  it  elsewhere  on  the  coast 
of  Sussex.  Its  name,  and  the  subsequent  details  of  Henry  of  Huntingdon^ 
show  that  it  stood  on  the  yerge  of  the  great  wood  mentioned  in  a  preceding 
note. 


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46  HENBT  OF  HUMinKQMV.  [BOOK  H. 

the  Angles  in  Britain,  Oerdie  and  his  s<m  Genrie  appeared 
off  Cerdice-sore  ^  with  five  ships.  The  same  day  the  people 
of  the  neighhonrhood  assemlded  in  great  numhers  and 
fot^ht  against  them.  The  Saxons  stood  £rm  in  order  of 
batde  before  their  ships,  repelling  the  attacks  of  the  islanders 
without  pursuing  Ihem,  for  they  never  quitted  th^  ranks. 
The  day  was  spent  in  these  altemate  attacks  and  retreats 
till  night  put  an  end  to  the  conflict.  Finding  how  resolute 
the  Saxons  were,  the  Britons  retired,  and  neither  party 
claimed  a  victory.  Cerdic,  however,  and  his  son  madie 
good  their  occupation  of  the  hostile  territory,  fix)m  time  to 
time  enlarging  their  possessions  along  tlie  coast,  though 
not  without  frequent  wars  with  the  natives. 

[a.d.  601.]  Seven  years  after  the  invasion  of  Gerdie,  Port^ 
witiii  his  sons  Beda  and  Megla,  disembari^ed  from  two  stout 
ships  at  Portsmouth.  An  alarm  was  immediately  spread 
throughout  the  neighbourhood,  and  the  governor  of  tho 
district  with  the  whole  population  fought  the  invaders.  But 
as  the  attack  was  disorderly,  as  each  arrived  on  the  spot, 
they  were  routed  in  the  twinlding  of  an  eye.  The  Brit<ms 
indeed  rushed  boldly  on  the  enemy,  but  the  steady  valour 
of  the  Saxons  threw  them  into  confusion.  The  chief  and 
the  people  being  either  slain  or  put  to  flight,  the  victory 
remained  with  Port  and  his  sons.  From  him  the  place 
was  called  Portsmouth. 

[a.i).  608.]  I  now  proceed  to  describe  the  war  between 
Nazaleod,  the  greatest  of  the  British  kings,  and  Cerdic,  with 
his  son  Kenric,  in  the  sixtieth  year  of  the  immigration 
of  ihe  Angles.  Nazaleod  was  a  king  of  high  renown  and 
exalted  rank,  fiom  whom  the  country  now  called  Cerdiches- 
forde^  was  then  named  Nazaleoli,  and  as  he  had  collected 
under  his  banner  the  whole  force  of  the  Britons,  C^die 
and  his  son  entreated  aid  £x)m  Esc,  the  king  of  Kent,  and 
from  iEUa,  the  great  king  of  the  South-Saxons,  and  from 
Port  and  his  sons,  the  last  who  had  come  over.     Their 

^  Cerdice-sore,  the  shore  of  Cerdic^  now  Yannonth^  t\e  month  of  the 
Tar,  or  Gar,  in  Norfolk. 

*  8azon  Chronicle,  Natanleod;  Charfbrd,  near  Fordinghridge,  Haatg. 
The  Saxon  Chronicle  reads ;  "  The  hind  was  named  Netley  from  him  as  fiur 
as  Charford."  Henry  of  Huntingdon  confuses  the  passage  by  a  mistidccn 
translation  of  the  Sazon  word  ''as  far  as,"  which  he  renders  ''now." 


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A.D.  508-514.]  COKQUESiS  OF  CEBOSO.  47 

forces  -were  arrayed  in  two  wings,  of  whidi  Oerdic  com- 
manded the  right,  Kenric,  his  son,  the  left  In  the  £rst 
onset,  Nazaleod  observing  that  the  ri^t  wing  was  the 
strongest,  charged  it  with  his  whole  force  for  the  purpose  of 
routing  at  once  the  most  formidable  part  of  the  enemy's  army. 
His  impetuous  attack  in  a  momait  overthrew  the  standaids, 
pierced  the  ranks,  and  put  Oerdic  to  flight,  with  great 
shra^ter  c£  his  right  wing.  Meanvdiile  Kenric,  perceiving 
his  father's  defeat,  and  the  rout  of  his  troops,  led  the  left  wing^ 
which  was  under  his  command,  against  the  rear  of  the 
enemy,  who  were  pursuing  the  fugitives.  The  batde  vras 
then  renewed  with  fresh  vigour,  until  the  king  Nazaleod 
was  slain,  and  his  whole  army  routed.  Five  tibousand  of 
his  troops  fell  on  the  field.  The  rest  saved  themselves  by 
a  precipitate  retreat.  The  Saxons  gained  the  honour  of  a 
victory  which  secured  to  them  peace  for  some  years,  and 
allur^  to  them  many  and  powerM  auxiliaries. 

[a.d.  514.]  Among  these,  in  the  sixth  year  after  <iie  war, 
Stuf  and  Witgar  came  with  three  ships  to  Gerdicesore^. 
At  daybreak  the  British  chiefs  arrayed  their  forces  against 
the  invaders  with  much  military  sk&l.  They  led  one  body 
along  the  ridges  of  the  hills,  and  another  in  the  valley  with 
silence  and  caulion,  until  the  rays  of  the  rising  sun  glancing 
from  their  gilded  shields,  the  hill  tops  and  the  very  sky 
above  them  ^stened  with  tiie  bright  array.  The  Saxons 
were  struck  witJi  terror  as  they  advanced  to  battle ;  but 
when  the  two  strong  armies  came  into  collision,  the  courage 
of  the  Britons  failed,  because  Grod  despised  them.  The 
triumph  of  the  Saxon  chiefs  was  signal,  and  the  restdt 
secured  them  large  possessions.  Thus  the  name  of  Oerdic 
was  rendered  terrible,  and  in  the  strength  of  it  he  overran 
the  country. 

About  this  time  died  iBUla,  King  of  the  South-Saxons,  who 
enjoyed  all  the  prerogatives  of  English  royalty,  having  under 
him  kings  and  nobles  and  governors.  His  son  Oissa  suc- 
ceeded him,  and  their  posterity  afterwards.  But  in  process 
of  time,  their  power  was  much  diminished,  and  at  length 
they  were  l»rought  under  subjection  by  other  kings. 

1  Saxon  duromde,    M«tAew  of  Westminster  says  two. 


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48  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  ll. 

Ttfe  kingdom  of  Wessex  was  foiinded  in  the  year  71  of 
the  Angles  in  Britain,  a.d.  519,  in  the  time  of  the  Emperor 
Justinian  the  elder,  who  reigned  eight  years.  In  the  course 
of  time  the  kings  of  Wessex  suhjugated  all  the  other  king- 
doms, and  established  a  monarchy  over  the  whole  of  Eng- 
land, so  that  we  may  reckon  the  times  of  all  the  other  kings 
with  reference  to  those  of  the  kings  of  Wessex,  by  whose 
growing  power  the  others  may  be  noted.  When  Cerdic  had 
reigned  seventeen  years  in  Wessex,  that  same  year  some  of 
the  most  powerful  of  the  British  chiefs  joined  battle  against 
him.  It  was  fought  bravely  and  obstinately  on  both  sides, 
till  when  the  day  was  declining,  the  Saxons  gained  the  vic- 
tory; and  there  was  great  slaughter  that  day  of  the  inha- 
bitants of  Albion,  which  would  have  been  still  more  terrible 
had  not  the  setting  of  the  sun  stayed  it  Thus  was  the 
name  of  Cerdic  glorified,  and  the  fame  of  his  wars,  and  of 
his  son  Kenric  was  spread  over  all  the  land.  From  that 
day  is  reckoned  the  beginning  of  the  kingdom  of  Wessex, 
which,  absorbing  all  the  rest,  has  continued  to  our  times. 
Cerdic  and  Kenric,  his  son,  in  the  nintb  year  of  his  reign 
[a.d.  527],  fought  another  battle  against  the  Britons  at  Cer- 
dicesford,  in  which  there  was  great  slaughter  on  both  sides. 
At  that  time  large  bodies  of  men  came  successively  from 
Germany,  and  took  possession  of  East-Anglia  and  Mercia ; 
they  were  not  as  yet  reduced  under  the  government  of  one 
king ;  various  chiefs  contended  for  the  occupation  of  dif- 
ferent districts,  waging  continual  wars  with  each  other ;  but 
they  were  too  numerous  to  have  their  names  preserved. 

Ll  those  times  Arthur  the  mighty  warrior,  general  of  the 
armies  and  chief  of  the  kings  of  Britain,  was  constantly  vic- 
torious in  his  wars  with  tihe  Saxons.  He  was  the  com- 
mander in  twelve  battles,  and  gained  twelve  victories.  The 
first  battle  was  fought  near  the  mouth  of  the  river  which  is 
called  Glenus^  The  second,  third,  fourth  and  fifth  battles 
were  fought  near  another  river  which  the  Britons  called 
Duglas,  in  the  country  of  Cinuis :  the  sixth  on  the  river 
called  Bassas.  The  seventh  was  fought  in  the  forest  of 
Chelidon,  which  in  British  is  called  "  Cat-coit-Celidon."  The 
eighth  battle  against  the  barbarians  was  fought  near  the 
»  Or  Glenn. 


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A.D.  527-530.]   KINGDOM  OF  ESSEX  FOUNDED.  49 

castle  Guinnion,  during  which  Arthur  bore  the  image  of  St 
Mary,  mother  of  God  and  always  virgin,  on  his  shoulders, 
and  by  the  grace  of  our  Lord  Jesus  Christ  and  the  blessed 
Mary  his  mother,  the  Saxons  were  routed  tlie  whole  of  that 
day,  and  many  of  them  perished  with  great  slaughter.  The 
ninth  battle  he  fought  at  the  city  LeogisS  which  in  the 
British  tongue  is  called  *'  Kaerlion."  The  tenth  he  fought 
on  the  bai^  of  a  river  which  we  call  Tractiheuroit ;  3ie 
eleventh,  on  a  hill  which  is  named  Brevom,  where  he  routed 
the  people  we  call  Cathbregion.  The  twelfth  was  a  hard- 
fought  battle  with  the  Saxons  on  Mount  Badon,  in  which 
440  of  the  Britons  fell  by  the  swords  of  their  enemies  in 
a  single  day,  none  of  their  host  acting  in  concert,  and 
Arthur  alone  receiving  succour  from  3ie  Lord.  These 
battles  and  battle-fields  are  described  by  Gildas  the  histo- 
rian*^, but  in  our  times  the  places  are  unknown,  the  Pro- 
vidence of  God,  we  consider,  having  so  ordered  it  that 
popular  applause  and  flattery,  and  transitory  gloiy,  might  be 
of  no  account  At  this  period  there  were  many  wars,  in 
which  sometimes  the  Saxons,  sometimes  the  Britons,  were 
victors ;  but  the  more  the  Saxons  were  defeated,  the  more 
they  recruited  their  forces  by  invitations  sent  to  the  people 
of  all  the  neighbouring  countries. 

The  kingdom  of  Essex,  that  is,  of  the  East^Saxons,  was 
founded,  as  fax  as  we  can  collect  from  old  writers,  by  Erchen- 
win,  who  was  the  son  of  OflFa,  who  was  the  son  of  Biedcan, 
who  was  the  son  of  Sigewlf,  who  was  the  son  of  Spoewe, 
who  was  the  son  of  Gesac,  who  was  the  son  of  Andesc,  who 
was  the  son  of  Saxnat  Slede,  the  son  of  Erchenwin,  suc- 
ceeded his  father  in  the  kingdom  of  Essex ;  he  married  the 
daughter  of  Ermeric,  king  of  Kent,  and  sister  of  Ethelbert. 
His  son  by  her,  Sibert,  was  the  first  king  of  Essex  con- 
verted to  the  Christian  flBiith. 

[a.d.  530.]  Meanwhile,  Cerdic,  with  his  son  Kenric,  having 
assembled  a  great  army,  fought  at  Wit-land,  and  being  suc- 
cessful in  the  war,  reduced  the  whole  island  after  a  prodi- 

1  Or  Legionis,  of  the  legion. 

'  Henry  of  Huntingdon  quotes  Nenniot  under  thii  name.  See  ce.  68'-4 
«f  the  Hift  Nenn. 


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KO  HBVBT  OF  HUMTINODOV.  [bOOK  XL 

gtotis  Blaa^ter  of  the  easmy  in  batda  at  Witgaxesburg^,  in 
the  thirteenth  year  of  his  reign.  Four  years  afterwards, 
Gertie  conferred  the  island,  whidi  in  Latin  is  called  **  Yeota," 
on  his  nephews,  Stof  and  Witgar.  Gerdic,  the  first  kmg  of 
Wessex,  reigned  eighteen  years*.  On  his  death  [xj>.  534] 
Eenric,  his  scm,  reigned  after  him  ^  years,  in  the  times 
of  the  EmpenMT  Jostiniaa,  whose  reign  lasted  88  years,  and 
when  Vigilius  was  Pope. 

[a.I).  538.]  In  the  fifth  year  of  Eenric,  tiie  sun  was  6cl^>sed 
firom  dayii^t  to  the  third  hour,  in  the  month  of  March; 
and  in  the  serenth  year  of  his  reign  [a^.  540],  it  was  eclipsed 
from  the  third  to  almost  the  ninth  hour,  on  the  xii  kaL 
July  [i^Hh  June],  so  that  the  stars  were  viMhle.  In  the 
teeih  year  of  Kenrie's  reign,  died  Witgar,  and  was  buried 
at  Witgaresburg,  which  deriyed  its  name  £com  him. 

The  kingdom  of  the  Northtmibrians  dates  firom  the 
thirteen^  ^  year  of  the  reign  of  Kenric.  The  chiefs  of  the 
Angles  who  subdued  that  province,  after  a  seiies  of  serere 
ba^es,  elected  Ida,  a  young  noMeman  of  the  hi^^iestrank, 
king.  He  was  the  son  (rf  Eoppe*,  the  son  of  Esc*,  the  s(m 
of  fagnim,  the  son  of  Angenwite,  the  son  of  Aloe,  the  son 
of  Beonoc,  the  son  of  Brand,  the  son  of  BsekLsBt,  the  son 
of  Woden,  the  son  of  Freddaf,  the  son  of  Eredewlf,  the 
son  of  Fin,  the  son  of  Godwlf,  the  son  of  Heat8B^  Ida,  a 
▼aliant  prince,  reigned  twelve  years,  indefatigable  and  always 
m  arms.  He  built  Bebanburgh^  fortifykog  it  by  surround- 
ing it  with  an  earthen  mound,  and  afterwards  with  a  wall. 
He  began  his  reign  in  the  year  of  grace  547. 

[a.b.  55d.}  Kenric,  in  the  eighteenth  year  of  his  reign 
fought  against  the  Britons^  who  advanced  with  a  great  army 
as  &r  as  Salisbmy ;  but  having  assembled  an  aunhary  force 
from  all  quarters,  he  engaged  them  triumphant)^,  over- 
throwing tiieir  numerous  army,  uid  completely  rcnstiiig 
and  dispersing  it     In  the  twenty-second  year  of  his  reign 

*  Ouiibiookt  *Sixteent  ^  Foartoentkt 

*  This  genealogy  follows  the  Saxon  Ohronicle. 

*  JSscwine.  «  Or  Geatse. 

7  Bamborough  Castle,  in  Northumberland.  Sm  Sasoft  CfaiMiids.  Heniy 
ti  Huntingdon,  who  attribwtaf  b«t&  dw  bridig*  aid  the  wall  to  King  Ida,  is 
followed  by  M.  of  Westminster,  an,  648. 


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A.]>.  M6.]  BATTL8  OF  BAKBUfiT.  fl 

[▲j>.  656],  Keniie,  with  Ms  son  Ceanlin,  had  another  batde 
widi  the  Britons,  whidi  was  after  this  manner :  to  atenge 
the  defeat  which  they  had  sustained  five  yean  before,  the 
Sritons  asseml^ied  vast  numbers  of  their  bravest  warriors, 
and  drew  them  np  near  Banbory.  Their  batde  array  was 
formed  in  nine  battalions,  a  convenient  number  for  military 
tactics,  three  being  posted  in  ^be  van,  three  in  the  centre, 
and  three  in  the  rear,  with  chosen  commanders  to  each,  while 
the  archers  and  slingers  and  cavaliy  were  di^osed  afW  the 
Boman  order.  But  the  Saxons  advanced  to  the  attack  in 
one  compact  body  with  such  fury,  that  the  standards  being 
4a^ed  together  and  home  down,  and  the  spears  being 
lm>ken,  it  became  a  hand-to-hand  fight  with  the  sword. 
The  battle  lasted  till  night-fall  without  either  party  being 
aUe  to  claim  the  victory.  Nor  is  that  wcmderfnl,  consider- 
ing that  ihe  warriors  were  men  of  extraordmary  stature, 
strength,  and  resolution ;  while  in  our  days  they  are  so  de- 
generate, that  when  armies  come  into  coUision,  one  or 
otherof  them  is  put  to  flight  at  the  first  onset  Eenric,hav- 
ing  reigned  26  years,  died  [a.d.  560],  and  Ceaulin  his  son 
reigned  in  his  stead  30  years.  In  ihe  same  year,  Ida, 
king  of  Northumbria,  also  died,  and  after  him  Ella  reigned 
dO  years,  though  he  was  not  the  son  of  Ida,  but  the  son 
of  Ma,  the  son  of  Us^^ea,  the  son  of  Witgils,  the  son  of 
Westrefalcna,  the  son  of  Sefugil,  the  son  of  Seabald,  the 
son  of  Sigegeat,  the  son  of  Wepdeg,  the  son  of  Woden,  the 
9(m  of  Fredealaf. 

In  the  sixth  year  of  Oeaulin's  reign  in  Wessex,  E&elb^, 
that  great  king,  began  to  reign  in  Kent^.  He  was  the  tiurd 
o(  the  English  kings  who  ruled  aU  their  eastern  provinces 
which  are  divided  hy  the  river  Humber,  and  the  neighbour- 
ing boundaries,  firom  the  northern  kingdom.  The  first  who 
possessed  this  supreme  power*  was  JSUa,  king  of  the  East- 
Saxons  ;  the  second,  Ceaulin,  king  c^  the  West-Sazons ;  the 
third,  as  just  stated,  Ethelbert,  king  of  Kent;  the  fourth, 

*  The  Saxon  ChronicU  fijces  the  AocMtioii  of  Bih^ert  in  tke  first  year  of 
Oeanlin,  instead  of  the  sixth,  in  which  it  appears  to  agree  with  the  compnta- 
tion  of  Bede.    See  book  i.  c.  5. 

*  These  paiamcBBt  kings  wan  called  Bretwakbb  The  snOt  wm  personal 
and  not  hereditary. 

E  2 


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fid  BBHBY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  H. 

•  Bedwald,  king  of  the  East-Angles,  who,  during  the  life- 
time of  Ethelbert,  held  the  gOTemment  of  his  own  state. 
The  fifth  monarch  was  Edwin,  king  of  the  Northmnbrians, 
the  most  powerful  people  of  all  who  inhabited  Britain. 
His  dominion  extended  over  all  the  tribes  both  of  the 
English  and  Britons,  with  the  exception  of  the  people  of 
Kent.  He  also  reduced  to  the  dominion  of  the  English, 
the  Isle  of  Man  and  the  other  islands  which  lie  between 
Britain  and  Ireland.  Sixthly,  Oswald,  king  of  Northum- 
bria,  a  prince  of  great  sanctity,  held  the  sovereignty  of  the 
various  nations  within  the  same  boimdaries.  Seventhly, 
Oswy,  his  brother,  in  a  short  time  established  his  rule  with 
almost  equal  Umits ;  and  he  also  subjugated  and  rendered 
tributary  most  of  the  tribes  of  Scots  and  Picts  who  occu- 
pied the  northern  districts  of  Britain.  The  eighth  was 
Egbert,  king  of  Wessex,  whose  rule  extended  as  far  as  the 
Himaber.  The  ninth  was  Alfred,  his  grandson,  who  esta- 
blished his  authority  in  all  parts  of  &e  kingdom.  The 
tenth  was  Edgar,  great-graudson  of  Alfred,  a  brave  though 
peaceful  king,  whose  dominion,  or  at  least  his  ascendancy, 
extended  over  all  the  English  and  Scottish  people ;  which 
his  successors  inherit  to  the  present  day.  It  was  in  the 
time  of  Ethelbert  that  the  English  were  converted  to  the 
Christian  Mth,  which  will  be  diligently  treated  of  in  the 
sequel  of  our  history^. 

[a.d.  568.]  Ceaulin,  in  the  ninth  year  of  his  reign,  with 
his  brother  Chuta,  two  very  valiant  men,  were  compelled 
by  various  causes  to  engage  in  war  with  Ethelbert,  who  had 
arrogantly  intruded  himself  into  their  kingdom.  In  a 
battle  fought  at  Mirandime^,  his  two  generals,  Oslap  and 
Cneban,  thimderbolts  of  war,  with  a  vast  number  of  their 
followers,  were  slain,  and  Ethelbert  himself  was  pursued  as 
iar  as  Kent.  This  is  remarkable  as  the  first  international 
war  among  the  English  kings. 

[a.d.  671.]  In  the  twelfth  year  also  of  Ceaulin,  his  brother 
Cutha  fought  a  battle  with  flie  Britons  at  Bedeanford,  now 
called  Bedford,  the  chief  town  of  the  neighbouring  dis- 

>  In  Book  iiL  following. 

^  Qaery^  Merton,  in  Surrey.    Some  MSS.  read  Wipandnne  or  Wibban- 
done* 


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AJ).  571-590.]       EABT-ANGLTA  AND  MEBCIA.  53 

trict.  In  this  battle  he  was  victorious,  and  the  fiiiits  of  lus 
arms  were  four  fortified  places,  namely,  Lienbirig,  Aelesbuiy^ 
Benesintune,  and  ^cgnesham  ^ ;  but  Cutha,  a  great  man,  the 
king's  brother,  died  the  same  year. 

The  foimder  of  the  kingdom  of  East-Anglia,  which  in- 
cludes Norfolk  and  Suffolk,  was  UflFa,  from  whom  the  kings 
of  the  East-Angles  were  called  UflBingas.  It  was  afterwards 
held  by  his  broQier  Titulus,  the  bravest  of  the  East-Anglian 
kings. 

[a.d.  577.]  Ceaulin,  with  his  son  Cuthwine,  in  the  eigh- 
teenth year  of  his  reign  fought  a  battle  with  the  Britons  at 
Deorham*.  Three  British  fings,  Commagil,  Candidan,  and 
Farinmagil,  led  their  followers  against' them  splendidly  and 
skilfully  arrayed,  so  that  the  conflict  was  veiy  obstinate. 
But  the  Almighty  gave  the  victory  on  that  day  to  his  enemies, 
and  discomfited  his  own  people,  who  had  foolishly  offended 
Him,  so  that  the  three  Christian  kings  were  slain,  and  the 
survivors  from  the  slaughter  were  put  to  flight.  The  Saxons 
pursued  them  fiercely,  taking  three  important  towns,  Glou» 
cester,  Cirencester,  and  Bath. 

[a.i).  684.]  In  the  twenty-fifth  year  of  his  reign,  Ceaulin 
and  Cuthwine  again  fought  with  the  Britons  at  Fedhsmlea'. 
The  battle  was  fought  with  great  loss  and  fiiry  on  both 
sides.  Cuthwine,  overcome  by  niunbers,  was  struck  down 
and  slain ;  and  the  English  were  routed  and  put  to  flight 
But  the  king  Ceaulin  succeeded  in  rallying  his  troops,  and 
snatched  the  victory  from  those  who  haa  been  at  first  victors, 
and,  pursuing  the  vanquished,  gained  much  land  and  great 
booty. 

Crida,  as  far  as  we  learn  from  old  records,  was  the  first 
king  of  Mercia.  Such  were  the  beginnings  of  the  several 
English  kingdoms,  of  which  I  have  pointed  out  the  dates 
and  revolutions  as  clearly  as  I  could  from  what  we  find  in 
the  books  of  ancient  writers,  bringing  them  into  relation 
with  the  SBras  of  the  kings  of  Wessex. 

[a.d.  590-596.]  Ceaulin  died  in  the  thirtieth  year  of  his 

'  '  Lygcanburh  {Parte),  Lenbnry  {Ingram).    The  three  last  placei  are 
clearly  Ailesbmy,  Benson,  and  Ensham.— See  Saa*  Chroii, 
*  Pyrham,  in  Gloucestershire. 
'  Frethem,  near  the  Severn  in  Gloucestershire. 


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54  HENBY  07  HUXTCDraDOH.  [BOOK  IL 

reign  \  and  after  him  Gec^c  reigned  five  years..  Ella,king 
of  the  Northumbrians,  died  the  same  year^  and  after  him 
Ethehric  reigned  also  five  years.  In  the  third  year  after 
this,  &e  Britons  and  Saxcxns  fonght  a  battle  at  Wodnes- 
bnrie^  The  British  army  advanced  in  close  order,  aftear  ^e 
Boman  fashion,  but  the  Saxons  rushed  forward  with  despe- 
rate, but  disorderly,  courage,  and  the  conflict  was  very  severe. 
God  gave  the  victory  to  tibe  Britons ;  and  Hne  Saxons,  who 
commonly  were  as  much  superior  to  the  Britons  in  fight,  as 
they  were  slower  in  flight,  suflfered  much  in  their  retreat. 
After  these  times  Grida,  king  of  Mercia,  departed  this  li£B^ 
and  his  son  Wippa  [or  Pybba]  succeeded  him.  About  Ihis 
time  also  Ethelfert,  who  is  named  the  Fierce,  succeeded 
EtheMc  in  Northumbria.  Now  also  the  Lombards  invaded 
Italy;  and  not  long  afterwards  Gregory  introduced  the  V70^ 
of  God  into  En^and. 

[aj).  597.]  During  the  reign  of  Cedric  in  Wessex,  of 
Ethelfert  in  Northumbria,  and  of  Wippa  in  Mercia,  Ethc^ 
bert,  the  king  of  Kent,  and  the  Eentii^  people,  were  conr 
verted  to  the  faith,  as  will  be  shown  in  the  Book  following*. 
Wippa  was  succeeded  by  Keorl*,  ^o  was  not  his  son,  but 
his  kinsman.  Ceolric  departed  this  life  after  a  reign  of  five 
years,  after  whom  Oeolwulf  reigned  in  Wessex  fourteen 
years,  through  all  of  which  he  was  engaged  in  wars,  either 
with  the  English,  or  the  Scote,  or  the  Picts.     Oeolwulf  ^ 


'  Hhe  Saxon  Chronicle  states  that  Ceaulin  "  wm  driTen  from  his  king- 
dom" in  590  [or  591],  and  died  in  593.  It  does  not  speak  of  Ms  haring 
been  restored,  and  dates  the  accession  of  Oeolric  from  his  expulsion.  Henrj 
of  Himtingdon,  hoieever,  confuses  the  two  events,  thon^  he  confutes 
CeKHlin'i  reign  correctly  at  80  years. 

'  Henry  of  Himtingdon  also  errs  in  fixing  the  death  of  Slla  iimI  the  accef- 
rion  of  Ethelric  the  same  year  as  the  death  of  Ceaolin.  The  Saxon  Chronicle, 
the  better  anthority,  places  it  in  588. 

*  Wansb(aeugh,  or  Wanborongh,  Wilts.  Aoeofding  to  the  Saxon 
Chronicle,  it  was  c^fter  this  battlet,  which  was  ia  591,  that  Ceaidin  wai 
esqpelled. 

*  Book  iii. 

*  **  Flor.  of  Worcester  makes  Eeozl  the  same  person  as  Crida ;  but  ai  tae 
name  of  'Keorl'  does  not  a]^>ear  in  the  genealogies  of  ihe  kings,  Henry  o 
Huntingdon  considers  him  a  different  person,  and  describes  hmi  a«  a  i 
man,  and  not  a  son,  of  Wippa."— Pctrw. 


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A.i>.  604,]  aAXOHs  is»  bwtoms.  56 

son  of  Chute,  who  was  son  of  KmxiC,  who  was  son  of 
Cerdic. 

In  the  seventh  year  of  Oeolwulf  ^,  which  was  the  first  of 
the  Emperor  Fhoeas,  who  goyemed  the  Roman  Empire  eight 
years,  Ethelbert,  the  fierce  king  of  the  Northumbrians,  who 
was  more  powerful  and  move  amMtdous  than  all  the  Englifth 
Imigs,  made  great  hayoc  of  the  Britons.  No  one  of  their 
generals,  no  one  of  their  kings,  redneed  m<»:6  of  the  land 
to  the  condition  of  being  dtheor  tributanr  to  the  Saxons  or 
colonized  by  them,  after  the  natiye  inhabitants  were  either 
exterminated  or  enslaved.  What  was  said  of  Benjamin 
may  truly  be  applied  to  him:  ^  Benjamin  shall  imsx  as  a 
w<^;  in  the  m<»ning  he  shall  devour  the  prey,  and  at  ni^t 
he  shall  divide  the  q^nl.**'  Wheiefore,  roused  by  his  ag* 
gressions,  iBdan,  king  of  the  Soots  who  had  settled  in 
Britain,  marched  against  him  with  a  numerous  and  power* 
fol  army,  but  was  defeated  and  fled  with  a  very  few  folr 
lowers.  [a.d.  603.]  In  this  batde,  which  was  fought  at  a  well- 
known  place  called  Degsfanstan^  almost  the  whole  army 
of  the  Scots  was  slaught^ed.  Tedbald  also,  the  brother  of 
EthelMd,  was  slain  v^  the  body  of  troops  whidi  he  com- 
manded. From  that  time  none  of  the  Scottish  kings  ven- 
tored  to  engage  in  war  with  the  En^^h  nation. 

[a.1).  607.]  In  the  ninth  year  of  Ceolwulf;  the  king  Ethel- 
Md  obtained  a  Victory  ova:  the  Britons  at  Carlisle;  of  tha 
events  of  this,  the  greatest  of  his  wars,  we  propose  to  teat 
in  the  Book  which  follows,  reiq[>eeting  the  conversion  of 
AeEn^ish.  Among  the  various  wars  in  which  Ceolwulf  was 
CTigaged,  which  we  omit  to  notice  for  the  sake  of  brevi^* 
there  was  a  veiymemorable  battle  against  ihe  men  of  Sussex* 
in  which  both  armies  suffered  grievously,  that  of  Sussex 
the  most  severely,  Ceolwulf  died  after  a  reign  of  fourtacan 
years,  and  after  him  Kinigils  was  kmg  of  Wessex  during 
SI  years,in  the  time  of  Meracliua,  who  was  emperor  26 
years.  Einigik  was  son  of  Ceohic,  ^be  son  of  Chute,  tha 
son  of  Cwdic.  In  the  fourth  year  <^  his  reign  [juD.  614] 
he  asBomated  with  himself  in  the  regal  dignity  h^  brother 
Iadlelm^  and  tiiey  assemUed  an  army  against  the  Britums 

^  Bede,  i.  84.  ^  Gen.  zIik.  27.  '  Bauton  ?  in  Cumberland. 

*  Siucon  Chronicle,  Cwidielm. 


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66  HBNBT  OF  HUNTIHODON,  [BOOK  II. 

at  Beandune*.  As  soon  as  it  was  fonned  into  sections, 
companies,  and  battalions,  with  centurions,  generals,  and 
commanders  in  due  order,  it  was  led  against  the  enemy. 
But  when  the  Britons  saw  it  advance  in  terrible  array,  with 
the  gay  standards  pointed  towards  them,  the  long  spears 
advanced,  and  the  edges  of  the  heavy  bal^e-axes  gleaming 
in  their  eyes,  they  were  struck  with  a  sudden  panic,  and  at 
once  had  recourse  to  flight;  but  not  in  time  to  save  them- 
selves. The  Saxons  were  victorious  without  any  loss  on 
their  side,  and  on  numbering  the  slain  they  counted  two 
thousand  and  sixty-two  bodies  of  the  Britons. 

[a.d.  616-17.]  In  the  sixth  year  of  Einigils,  died 
Ethelbert,  king  of  Kent,  and  was  succeeded  by  his  son 
^dbold.  In  the  following  year,  EthelMd,  king  of  the 
Northumbrians,  and  BedwaLd,  king  of  East-Anglia,  levied 
nimierous  armies  on  both  sides,  in  consequence  of  provoca- 
tions mutually  received.  A  battle  was  fought  between  them 
on  the  borders  of  Mercia,  on  the  eastern  bank  of  the  river 
Idle* :  from  whence,  it  is  said  "  the  river  Idle  was  stained 
with  English  blood."  The  fierce  king  Ethelfrid,  indignant 
that  any  one  should  venture  to  resist  him,  rushed  on  the 
enemy  boldly,  but  not  in  disorder,  with  a  select  body  of 
veteran  soldiers,  though  the  troops  of  Bedwald  made  a 
brilhant  and  formidable  display,  marching  in  three  bodies, 
with  fluttering  standards  and  bristling  spears  and  helmets, 
while  their  numbers  greatly  exceeded  their  enemies.  The 
king  of  the  Northumbrians,  as  if  he  had  found  an  easy 
prey,  at  once  fell  upon  the  close  columns  of  Bedwald,  and 
put  to  the  sword  Bainer,  the  king's  son,  with  the 
division  he  commanded,  his  own  precursors  to  the  shades 
below.  Meanwhile  Bedwald  enraged,  but  not  appalled,  by 
this  severe  loss,  stood  invincibly  £urm  with  his  two  remain- 
ing columns.  The  Northumbrians  made  vain  attempts  to 
penetrate  them,  and  Ethelfiid,  charging  among  the  enemy's 
squadrons,  became  separated  from  his  own  troops  and  was 
struck  down  on  a  heap  of  bodies  he  had  slain.  The  death 
of  their  king  was  the  signal  for  universal  flight  Ethelfrid 
was  succeeded  by  Edwin,  who  was  afterwards  converted  to 
Christianity  ^    So  great  was  the  peace  in  Britain  during  his 

1  Bampton,  in  Oxfordshire. 
*  See  Sax.  Chron.  *  See  Bede,  iL  16. 


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A.D.  617-628.]  WABS  OP  THE   SAXONS.  57 

reign,  as  far  as  his  dominion  extended,  that  a  woman  would 
travel  with  a  little  child  from  sea  to  sea  without  apprehension 
of  danger.  The  king  also  caused  posts  to  he  fixed  on  the 
highways  near  clear  fountains,  and  caused  hrazen  cups  to 
be  suspended  from  them  for  the  refreshment  of  travellers, 
for  which  either  fear  or  love  seciured  a  safe  respect.  En- 
signs were  constantly  borne  before  the  king ;  and  on  the 
rcNAds  that  kind  of  standard  which  the  Bemans  call "  Tufi&i," 
and  the  Engli^,  Tuff  ^,  was  carried  before  him  wherever 
he  went 

[a.d.  626.]  In  the  sixteenth  year  of  Kinigils,  he,  to- 
gether with  Kichelm,  made  war  on  Edwin,  whom  they  had 
before  attempted  to  assassinate;  but  they  were  deservedly  de- 
feated, as  will  hereafter  appear.  In  the  same  year  Penda  the 
Strong  began  to  reign  over  Mercia.  He  was  ihe  son  of  Wippa, 
Ihe  son  of  Crida,  the  son  of  Cinewald,  the  son  of  Gnibba,  fiie 
son  of  Icil,  the  son  of  Eomer,  the  son  of  Angeltheau,  the 
son  of  Ofl&i,  the  son  of  Weremund,  the  son  of  Witlac,  the 
son  of  Woden.  The  same  year  died  Sebert,  king  of  Essex, 
whose  two  sons  succeeded  him  in  his  kingdom.  Not  long 
afterwards  they  engaged  in  war  with  Kini^ls  and  Kichelm, 
bravely,  indeed,  for  their  army  was  inferior  in  numbers,  but 
unfortunately,  for  both  the  young  men  were  slain,  and  of 
their  entire  army  scarcely  a  man  effected  his  flight  over  the 
masses  of  the  skin  and  the  torrents  of  meir  blood, 
Sigebert,  sumamed  *'  the  little,"  succeeded  them ;  and  to 
him  Sigebert,  a  holy  and  virtuous  king,  who  was  assassinated 
by  his  own  followers. 

[a.d.  628.]  The  third  year  after  this,  Kinigils  and 
Kichelm  fought  a  battle  against  Penda  at  Cirencester, 
where  a  powerfril  army  was  assembled  on  both  sides.  Both 
having  vowed  not  to  turn  their  backs  on  their  enemies,  each 
firmly  maintained  its  ground  until  they  were  happily  sepa- 
rated by  the  setting  of  the  sun.  In  the  morning,  as  they 
were  sensible  that,  if  they  renewed  the  conflict,  the  destruc- 
tion of  both  armies  must  ensue,  they  listened  to  moderate 
counsels,  and  concluded  a  treaty  of  peace. 

>  Probably  a  toft  of  featbers,  mentioned  by  Yigetini,  b.  il  c  5,  among 
ifao  itandards  of  the  Romans ;  and  afterwaida  nied  as  an  annorial  enngn,  at 
in  the  plume  of  the  Prinoe  of  Wales,  and  the  cretU  of  the  Scropei  and  other 


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58  HEHST  OF  HXJimNCUOOK.  [BOOK  JL. 

[A.D.  088.]  In  the  twenty-tiiiFd  year  of  Kinigils,  ISmg 
Edwin  was  killed  by  Penda  the  Strang,  as  will  be  fully  bbsA 
properly  related  in  Ihe  following  Book.  The  year  f(dlowing> 
Oswald,  a  holy  king,  mounted  the  throne  of  the  Northnm* 
brians,  which  he  filled  nine  years.  The  year  following^ 
Kinigils  was  convarted  to  the  C^iristianfuth,  and  die  next  year 
Kichelm  was  baptized,  who  r^gned  jointljr  with  his  father 
Kinigils,  who  died  that  year.  Abont  Hie  same  time,  E«q»^ 
wald%  Idng  of  the  East^Angles,  and  brother  of  Bedwakly 
was  converted  to  the  true  faith ;  and  when,  shortly  alter- 
wards,  he  was  slain  by  Penda  the  Strong,  his  brother  and 
successor  Sigbert  was  conyerted  by  Felix,  the  bishop; 
and  the  wiiole  nation  of  the  East-An^es  at  the  same 
time.  Eadbald,  king  of  Kent,  died  four  years  «ffcerv»rdii 
[A.D.  640],  after  a  reign  of  23  years.  He  was  succeeded 
by  Ercombert^,  his  scm,  who  reigned  2d  years,  and 
lived  in  the  lime  of  Heracleonas,  who  was  emperor  tuo 
years. 

[a.d.  643.]  Kinigils,  after  r^gning  81  years,  departed 
this  life  in  the  time  of  the  Emperor  Constaatine,  who 
had  reigned  33  years,  and  was  the  son  of  the  ^Ider 
Constanthie,  whose  reign  lasted  haM  a  year.  Kinigil<^ 
was  succeeded  by  his  son  Kenwald,  who  held  the  king- 
dom of  Wessex  81  years,  as  his  Either  had  done.  t£i 
same  year  was  slain  the  holy  king  Oswald,  as  will  be  re- 
lated in  the  Book  following,  and  a&r  him  his  brother  Oswy 
reigned  28  years.  Kenwald,  in  the  fifith  year  of  his  reign 
[a.d.  645],  was  attacked  by  Penda,  who  had  div(»reed  tae 
sister,  and,  not  being  able  to  resist  him  as  his  father  had 
done,  he  was  routed  before  him  in  battle,  and  driven  out  of 
his  Idngdom.  Beeovering  it  three  years  afiberwards,  Kenwald 
granted  to  Cedred^  his  kinsman  and  ally,  three  thousand 
Surms,  situate  near  Esesdune^.  About  thk  time,  Sigebart; 
a  servant  of  God,  succeeded  his  brother  Earpwald,  kmg  of 
the  East-Angles ;  whose  devotkm  was  such  that,  having 
relinquished  his  kingdom  to  his  cousin  Ecgrie,  he  ent^:ed 

*  Or  Carpwald.  '  Or  Erchenbriht. 

>  Or  Cuthred;  <Skr.  C%rwi.  The  Chmnele  ca^  tkis  ^*iit  "Hate 
llioiiiaiid  hides  of  haA  by  AmMowtu,**  which  Ingsm  wgyeBti  may  be  Cwv- 
ciidmet-heMi^  Oockaouley-hiU,  Bedu,  fiam  CwektiiB,  fnOubt  of  Cathnd. 

*  Or  ^scendune. 


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AJ).  6ft5.]  PBlfBA,  EDK»  OF  MBBGIA.  59 

a  monasteiy  and  received  ihe  tonsure.  After  maaov  yeun, 
howev^,  they  compelled  him  to  go  out  against  the  king 
Penda;  but  he  would  only  cany  a  staff  in  the  battle,  in 
which  he  was  slain.  The  king  Ecgric  and  his  whole  army 
fell  with  him.  Axma  succeeded,  who  was  son  of  Eni,  of 
the  royal  race,  an  excellent  man,  and  the  father  of  an  excel- 
lent s<m. 

In  the  thirteenth  year  of  Kenwald*s  reign,  Penda  the 
Strong  attacked  Anna,  the  king  of  the  EastAngles,  before 
named,  to  whom  the  verse  of  Lucan  may  be  applied' ; 

**  Bat  Penda  for  destruction  eager  boms. 
Free  passages  and  bloodless  ways  lie  aoona." 

Thus  he  rose  with  threatening  aspect  heicxe  the  doomed 
host  of  King  Anna : — 

^  Rerce  as  a  wolf,  by  liiinger  rendered  bold, 
O'erleaps  the  £niee,  and  ravins  m  tlie  fold, 
Xanglmg  the  fleecy  flodc,  besmeared  w^  blood; 
His  jaws,  his  shaggy  hide,  reek  in  the  gory  flood. 
Some  he  devoars,  insatiate;  some  he  tears ; 
Kor  one  of  all  the  qmyeriiig  crowd  he  spares. 
So  mighty  Penda,  deafiog  forions  blows, 
Prostrates  the  Ibremoat  of  his  cowering  hm," 

So  King  Anna  and  his  anny  fell  qiucUj  at  the  edge  of  the 
sword,  and  there  was  scarcely  one  who  survived.  Elhelhere 
succeeded  his  brother  Anna,  and  was  slain  in  his  turn 
by  Penda,  Ethelwulf  succeedii^.  The  kingdom  of  Eas^ 
Anglia  having  been  plundered,  Penda  the  Strong  withdrew 
his  army  into  Noithumbria.  In  the  fourteenth  year  of 
Kenwald  [a.p.  655],  Penda,  who  had  slain  others  with  the 
sword,  himself  fell  by  the  sword ;  as  it  is  written,  "  He  who 
smite^  with  the  sword,  shall  perish  hj  the  sword."^  Penda 
was  slain  by  King  Oswy  near  the  river  Winwed^  whence  it 
is  said : — 

**  At  the  Wimred  was  avenged  -Ae  skitter  af  Ann, 
The  sUofl^ter  of  the  kings  Sigbert  and  Eq^ric^ 
The  slai^hter  of  the  kii^  Oawald  and  Bdwin." 

He  was  succeeded  by  his  son  Peda,  the  first  of  the  kings  oi 

1  Phaxi. ii.  439.  >  JUHzoi.  52. 

*  The  river  Aire,  near  Leeds. 


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60  HEMBX  OF  HUlVTINaDON,  [BOOK  II. 

Mercia  who  was  baptized ;  and  the  people  of  Mercia,  also 
called  Midel-engle,  that  is,  Middle-England,  were  by  him 
and  with  him  converted  to  the  fiEdth.  He  was  slain  shortly 
afterwards  [a.d.  657],  upon  which  Wulfere,  his  brother, 
reigned  in  his  stead  twenty  years ;  a  king  who  inherited 
the  virtues  of  his  family.  At  that  time  also  was  baptized 
Sigbert,  king  of  Essex,  that  is,  of  the  East-Saxons,  who 
succee'ded  to  that  kingdom  upon  the  death  of  Sigbert,  sur- 
named  the  Little. 

[a.d.  668.]  Kenwald,  king  of  the  West-Saxons,  was  com- 
pelled to  fi^t  the  Britons  near  Pen  \  Por,  learning  that 
he  had  been  conquered  and  driven  from  hijs  kingdom  by 
Penda  the  Strong,  and  concluding  that  he  was  ill-prepared  for 
war,  they  mustered  a  great  army,  and  commenced  hostilities 
with  great  insolence.  At  the  first  onset,  the  English,  for  a 
time,  gave  way ;  but,  as  they  dreaded  flight  more  tJban  death, 
and  stood  on  their  defence,  the  Britons  were  exhausted, 
their  strength  melted  away  hke  snow,  and,  turning  their 
backs  on  the  enemy,  they  fled  from  Pen  even  to  Pedred^ 
and  an  incurable  wound  was  inflicted  that  day  on  the  race 
of  Brute  {a.d.  661].  Kenwald  also,  in  the  twentieth  year  of 
his  reign,  engaged  in  war  with  Wulfere,  king  of  Mercia, 
who  was  son  of  Penda.  For  the  king  of  Mercia  ^  in- 
heriting his  father's  valour  and  good  fortune,  having  put  to 
flight  and  expelled  the  king  of  Wessex,  marched  through 
the  enemy's  country  with  a  numerous  army,  and  reduced 
and  took  possession  of  the  Isle  of  Wight,  which  lies  oppo- 
site. By  his  influence,  Ethelwulf,  king  of  Sussex,  was  first 
converted  to  the  faith ;  and,  receiving  him  from  the  laver  of 
baptism,  he  conferred  on  him  the  Isle  of  Wight  in  token  of 
his  adoption ;  and  that  he  might  convert  the  inhabitants  to 
the  faith  of  Christ,  he  sent  to  him  Eppa,  a  presbyter,  to 
preach  the  Gospel :  but  at  first  he  was  unsuccessful.  The 
third  year  afterwards  [a.d.  664],  on  the  3rd  of  May, 
there  was  an  eclipse  of  the  sun,  followed  by  a  grievous 
pestilence  both  in  Britain  and  Ireland.  That  year,  Erchen- 
bert,  king  of  Kent,  together  with  Deusdedit,  archbishop  of 
Canterbury,  died  the  same  day.     After  that,  Egbert,  the 

'  See  Saxon  Chronicle.    Fen,  near  Gillingham,  Donet 
'  Petherton,  on  tbe  Parret,  in  Somersetshure, 
s  gee  Sax.  Chron, 


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A.D.  670.]  BAXON  SINGS.  61 

son  of  this  king,  reigned  nine  yealrs  in  Kent ;  and  Egbert 
king,  and  Oswy  king,  sent  Wighard,  the  priest,  to  ;Bk)me, 
that  he  might  be  appointed  archbishop  [a.d.  667].  But, 
Wighard,  dying  while  he  was  at  Borne,  the  Pope  Vitalian, 
consecrated  in  his  stead  Theodore  the  Great,  archbishop, 
whose  vigorous  administration  will  be  noticed  in  its  place. 

[a.d.  670.]  In  the  twenty-ninth  year  of  the  reign  of  Ken- 
wald,  Hie  great  king  of  Northumbria,  Oswy,  fell  sick  and 
died.  Egfert,  his  son,  who  succeeded  him,  reigned  fifteen 
years.  Kenwald  himself  died  in  the  thirty-first  year  of  his 
reign  [a.d.  672] •  Upon  his  death,  his  wife  Sexburgh,  reigned 
one  year.  The  preceding  year,  flights  of  birds  in  England 
encountered  each  other  in  a  desperate  fight.  The  same 
occurrence  was  repeated  in  my  own  time  in  Normandy 
during  the  reign  of  Henry  [a.d.  1119],  who  is  the  first 
of  the  kings  of  England  so  named,  and  is  thus  distinguished 
from  any  fiiture  king  of  the  same  name.  Birds  were  dis- 
tinctly seen  engaged  in  flight  near  Bouen,  in  such 
numbers  that  myriads  of  their  dead  bodies  were  found ; 
and  the  foreign  birds  appeared  to  have  been  put  to  flight 
This  prodigy  was  considered  to  portend  the  battle  between 
Heniy,  sovereign  Lord  of  England  and  Normandy,  and 
Lewis,  son  of  PhiUp,  king  of  France,  in  which  the  powerful 
King  Henry  was  victorious,  and  Lewis  was  defeated  and  put 
to  flight^ 

During  Sexburgh*s  short  reign,  Egbert,  king  of  Kent, 
died,  and  was  succeeded  by  his  son  Lothaire,  who  reigned 
twelve  years.  In  his  time,  Theodore  the  archbishop  held 
a  council  at  Thetford^  Escwin  also  succeeded  to  the  throne 
of  Essex,  but  his  reign  was  cut  short  by  premature  death. 
In  his  second  year,  however,  he  had  a  terrible  battle  vdth 
Wulfere,  king  of  the  Mercians^.  [a.d.  676.]  Inheriting  the 
valour  of  his  father  and  grandfather,  the  Mercian  king  had 
rather  the  better  of  it  in  the  conflict,  though  both  armies 
were  severely  handled,  and  on  either  side  many  thousand 
soldiers  were  sent  to  the  shades  below.  We  are  led  to  reflect 
bow  worthless  are  human  achievements,  how  perishable 
^^  warlike  triumphs  of  kings  and  nobles,  when  we  find  that, 

^  The  battle  of  Noyon,  in  which  Henry  was  nearly  killed  by  Crispin,  a 
Neman  officer. 
»  Or  "  Heortford."  »  See  Sax,  Chron. 


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n  HENBT  «r  HUMXIHGDON  [BOOK  H. 

of  the  two  kings,  vfbo,  for  the  sake  of  Tedn  pomp  and  empty 
glosy,  inflicted  such  gnerous  sn£Ferings  on  their  countiy, 
tike  one,  Wulfere,  died  firom  disease  the  same  year,  the  other 
tiie  year  following.  Ethebed  sneceeded  him  in  the  ki^- 
dom  of  Mercia.  Escwin's  reign  in  Wessex  lasted  only  two 
years:  Eentwin,  who  succeeded  him,  reigned  nine  years. 
The  aame  year,  Ethelred,  the  new  king  of  Mercia,  engaged 
in  an  expedition  against  Lothaire,  king  of  Kent;  rspoD. 
which  Lothaire,  terrified  hy  the  herBdittoy  renown  of  the 
Mercian  king,  dirunk  from  his  approadi,  and  did  not 
ventmre  to  march  against  him.  Etiielred,  therefore,  de- 
stroyed ijtke  city  of  Rochester,  and,  having  overrun  the 
whole  of  Kent,  retired  with  an  enormous  hooty. 

[a.d.  678.]  In  the  third  year  of  King  Kentwin,  a  comet 
was  seen  during  three  months,  which  eveiy  morning  shone 
with  a  hri^tness  like  tliat  of  the  sim.  The  year  following, 
Egfert,  king  of  Northumbria,  and  Etheked,  king  of  Mercia, 
had  a  fierce  battle  near  the  Trent;  in  which  was  slain 
Alwin,  brother  of  Egfert,  a  young  noble  ^  dear  to  the  peo;^ 
of  both  kingdoms,  inasmudi  as  Ethelred  had  married  his 
sister  Osrith.  It  seemed  now  that  the  seeds  were  sown  of 
a  fierce  contest  and  protracted  hostilities  between  the  two 
waiiike  nations  and  kings ;  but  Theodore,  a  prdate  beloved 
of  God,  by  divine  assistance  succeeded  by  his  salutaiy 
counsels  in  altogether  extinguishing  the  flames  ^wdiich 
tiireatened  to  burst  forth,  so  that  the  kings  and  people  on 
both  sides  were  appeased,  vdthout  the  forfeiture  of  a  single 
life  for  the  death  of  the  brother  of  the  Northimibrian  king, 
whose  revenge  was  satisfied  by  the  payment  of  the  r^u- 
lated  fine.  For  a  long  time  ai^;erwards  the  treaty  of  peace 
concluded  between  the  two  kings  and  their  respective  king- 
doms continued  unbroken.  The  same  year  died  ^theldrida, 
who  was  married  to  King  Egfert,  but  continued  to  observe 
her  vow  of  perpetual  virginity. 

[jLD.  680.]  In  the  seventh  year  of  his  reign,  K^itwin 
aagaged  in  war  v^ith  the  Britons,  who,  making  a  feeble  de- 
fence, were  furiousty  driyen  with  fire  and  sw^  as  far  as 
the  sea.  About  th&  time  a  coundl  was  held  at  Hatfidd, 
by  Theodore  the  archbishop.  After  the  death  of  Kentwin, 
dedwalla  became  king  of  Wessex  [a.d.  685],  who  eaiued 
1  "TheEtheling." 


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AJ>.  0B5.]  THE  HISFTABOHT  C^ORISTIANIZED.  6S 

the  conquered  Ida  of  Wig^t  to  be  conYerted  to  the 
M&,  to  which  he  himself  became  a  conyert  AH  the 
kmgs  of  England,  theiefoie,  were  now  believeis,  and  all 
parts  oi  the  land  were  blessed  with  the  li^t  and  grace  of' 
Ofarist 

In  tiiiis  Book,  which  mi^t  have  for  its  title,  <*  Of  the 
azmal  of  the  English,*'  I  have  traced*  so  to  speak,  the 
labyrinth  of  English  affairs  while  the  people  were  still 
heatiMns,  bringing  Hiem  down  from  the  time  of  tiie  first 
inrasion  of  Britain  by  the  Saxons,  until  each  of  the  king- 
doms conld  boast  of  tiiieir  illustrious  kings,  and  each  of  i£e 
kings  were  illuminated  by  the  gl(»ious  light  of  the  gospeL 
And  here  I  bring  to  a  dose  the  present  Book,  which, 
tiiough  the  nanatiTe  is  contained  in  a  few  words,  yet 
describes  a  long  succession  of  events,  achievements,  and 
WBiB.  In  the  Book  foUowing,  I  propose  to  relate  particu- 
larly who  were  the  missionaries,  by  what  exhortations,  by 
tduKt  miracles,  by  what  preaching,  what  kings,  and  in  what 
order,  our  countrymen  were  converted  to  the  faith  of  the 
L<Mrd. 

The  wars  -winch  have  be^i  described  were  carried 
on  during  the  reigns  of  fourteen  emperors,  comprising 
a  period  of  about  dl8  years:  in  the  time  <^  Mardan, 
who  reigned  7  years;  of  Leo,  who  reigned  17  years; 
of  Zeno,  who  also  rdgned  17  years ;  of  Anastasius,  who 
reigned  18  years;  of  Justin  the  elder,  who  reigned  8 
jears;  of  Justinian  the  elder,  who  reigned  88  years;  of 
Justin  the  "younger,  who  reigned  11  years;  of  Tiberius, 
who  rdgned  7  years;  of  Maurice,  who  reigned  21  years; 
of  Hioeas,  who  reigned  8  years ;  of  Heradius,  who  reigned 
26  years ;  of  Heracleon,  who  reigned  2  years ;  of  Constan- 
tine,  who  reigned  half  a  year;  and  of  ConstaiiLtine,  his  son, 
who  reigned  88  years. 

I  now  propose  to  collect  the  names  of  all  the  kings  of 
England  to  this  SBra,  which  are  scattered  throughout  the 
history,  in  short  tables  referring  to  each  kingdom ;  which, 
it  appears  to  me,  so  far  from  being  tedious,  will  be  dear 
and  satisflEictory  to  the  reader^ 

1  <*  Is  <3i]i  fMiifitibticm,  t]M  «»tal  of  tac&  wmi  neithor  amaf^ 
nor  with  tbe  tratk    Tbe  kingt  of  Kmt^  from  Hcngiit  to  BiO^xtd,  fiUoA  a 


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ti  HBNBT  OF  HUNnNGDON.  [BOOK  U, 

The  following  are  the  kings  of  Kent,  in  succession : — 

Hengist»  the  first  king,  was  8  years  in  making  the  con- 
quest, and  reigned  afterwards  32  years ;  Esc  his  son  reigned 
gloriously  34  years ;  Octa  reigned  obscurely  about  20  years ; 
Irmiric  feigned  in  like  manner  about  25  years ;  Etbelbert, 
son  of  Irmiric,  and  the  first  Christian  king,  had  a  glorious 
reign  of  66  years ;  Eadbald,  34 ;  Erchenbert,  84 ;  Egbert, 
d ;  Lothaire,  the  ninth  king,  12. 

The  following  are  the  kings  of  Wessex,  in  succession : — 

The  first  king  Cerdic,  fi-om  the  twentieth  year  after  the 
arrival  of  the  Saxons,  reigned  17  years;  Kenric,  son  of 
Cerdic,  reigned  26  years ;  Ceaulin,  son  of  Kenric,  reigned 
30  years ;  Ceolric,  son  of  Cteaulin,  reigned  6  years ;  Ceolwulf, 
son  of  Cutha,  brother  of  Ceaulin,  reigned  14  years ;  Kini- 
gils,  son  of  Ceola,  son  of  Cutha,  reigned  31  years,  the  first 
who  was  converted  to  the  faith ;  Kenwald,  son  of  Kinigils, 
also  reigned  31  years ;  Sexburgh,  wife  of  Kenwald,  reigned 
.  year;  Escwin,  son  of  Kenwald,  reigned  2  years;  Ken- 
wId.  kinsman  of  Escwin,  reigned  9  years. 

Tab  fo^  3wing  are  the  kings  of  Essex,  in  succession : — 

Erchenwin,  &e  first  king;  Slede;  Sebert,  first  received 
the  faith ;  Sigebert ;  Sibert ;  Swithelm ;  Sebbi ;  Sigard. 

The  following  are  the  kings  of  Northumbria,  in  succes- 
sion : — 

Ida,  the  first  king ;  JEHa;  Ethelfert;  Edwin,  first  received 
thefeith;  Oswald;  Oswy;  Egfert 

The  following  are  the  kings  of  East-Anglia,  in  succes- 
sion : — 

Uffa,  the  first  king;  Titulus;  Eedwald;  Erwald,  first 
received  the  faith;  Sigebert;  Ecgric;  Anna;  Ethelhere; 
Ethelwulf ;  Aldulf. 

The  following  are  the  kings  of  Mercia,  in  succession : — 

Crida,  the  first;  Wippa;  Ceorl;  Penda;  Peda,  first  re- 
ceived the  faith;  Wulfhere;  Ethelred. 

The  following  are  the  kings  of  Sussex,  in  order : — 

^lla,  the  first  king ;  Scisse. 

The  other  kings  of  Sussex  are  unknown,  through  the 
paucity  of  their  chroniclers,  or  the  obscurity  of  their  annals, 

period  of  376  yean;  but  according  to  Henry  of  Huntingdon^  their  lagDB 
lasted  either  867  or  897  yean ;  and  lo  of  the  rest."— Peff-M. 


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A.D.  685.]  coNCLxmnra  reflections.  65^ 

except  the  king  Ethelwold,  who  is  justly  had  in  remembrance, 
because  he  was  the  first  who  adopted  the  Christian  faith. 
Let  this  then  sufl&ce.  And  now,  reader,  observe  and  reflect 
how  soon  great  names  are  lost  in  oblivion ;  and  since  there 
is  nothing  enduring  in  this  world,  seek,  I  pray  you,  carefully 
to  obtain  a  kingdom  and  treasure  which  will  not  fail,  a 
name  and  honour  which  shall  not  pass  away,  a  memorial 
and  glory  which  shall  never  grow  old.  To  meditate  on  thili 
is  the  highest  wisdom,  to  attain  it  the  highest  prudence,  to 
enjoy  it  the  highest  feUcity. 


>il 


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or  HranoMDOK.  [book  bx. 


BOOK  in.* 

In  the  year  of  grace  582,  Maurice,  the  fi%-fcnirth  of  the 
Boman  emperors  from  Augustas,  began  his  reign.  In  the 
fourteenth  year  of  this  prince,  about  160  years  after  the 
arrival  of  the  Saxons  in  England  [a.d.  696],  Gregory,  the 
servant  of  God,  commissioned  Augustine,  wi&  several  other 
monks,  to  preach  the  gospel  to  the  English  nation^.  In 
obedience  to  the  Pope's  commands,  they  proceeded  on  their 
journey,  and  had  arrived  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Britain, 
when  they  became  so  alarmed  for  their  safety  among  a 
barbarous  people,  of  whose  very  language  they  were  igno- 
rant, that  tiiey  determined  to  abandon  the  imdertaking  and 
return  to  Rome.  In  short,  they  sent  back  Augustine,  who 
was  to  have  been  consecrated  bishop  in  case  they  were 
received  by  the  English,  that  he  might  humbly  entreat 
their  release  from  the  obligation  to  prosecute  so  perilous, 
so  toilsome,  and  so  hopeless  a  mission.  In  reply,  tiie  Pope 
addressed  to  them  an  epistle,  exhorting  them  to  proceed  in 
the  work  confided  to  them,  in  reliance  on  the  word  of  God, 
and  to  put  their  trust  in  his  divine  aid.  The  purport  of 
this  letter  was  as  follows : — 

"  Gregory,  the  servant  of  the  servants  of  God,  to  the  servants 
of  our  Lord. 

"  Forasmuch  as  it  would  have  been  better  not  to  begin  a 

^  In  this  tliird  Book,  Henry  of  Huntingdon  relates  the  conyersion  t» 
Christianity  of  the  Angles  and  Saxons  settled  in  England.  It  is  wholly  an 
abridgment  of  Bede's  Ecclesiastical  History;  but  by  reducing  it  to  order, 
and  describing  the  conversion  of  the  seyeral  kingdoms  of  the  Heptarchy 
seriaUm,  confining  his  nanatiTe  to  the  principal  eyents,  he  has  avoided  the 
prolixity  and  coupon  of  Bede's  History.  The  Archdeacon  has  better  pre- 
seryed  the  thread  of  his  narratiye,  by  judiciously  omitting,  in  general,  to 
insert  the  accounts  of  the  miracles  :with  which  the  history  of  Bede  is  largely 
interspersed.  These  he  reserved  for  a  separate  Book.  On  the  other  hand^ 
our  historian  sometimes  indulges  his  rhetorical  vein  in  embellishing  and  ex- 
patiating oit  incidents  which  Bede  relates  simply  and  succinctly. 

'  Bede'0  Bed.  Hilt,  book  I  c  28. 


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good  watk,  ^ma  ia  iSsask  of  mtih)Gbr«wm)^  htm  tiatat  whidi 
has  been  begtm,  it  bdiOY€»  you,  my  'wtil-b^oTed  sons^  to 
fi^ML  H^  good  work  -wtmh  hy  ihe  bdp  of  the  Lord  you 
ha?e  no w  enteved  on.  Let,  therefore,  neither  the  toil  of  the 
jcramey,  nor  ^!ie  tongues  of  e^itspeaiking  rneaHy  deter  you, 
hot  p^i»st  mtb  all  perseveranee  and  mth  aE  zeal  in  what 
you  hme  imdertakai  by  Hie  will  ol  God,  knowing  that  the 
greater  Ihe  sofifeving  the  greater  is  the  glory  of  the  et^nal 
reward.  "When,  tiierefoBe,  Augostiiiift  your  ddef^  whom  we 
alBo  appoint  your  Abbot,  returns  to  yon,  hiunbly  obey  him 
in  all  things ;  being  assured  that  whatever  ye  shall  do  by 
his  direction  w^  m  all  respects  be  peofitabl^  to  your  souls. 
Mi^  Almighty  God  defend  you  with  has  gracious  assistance, 
and  grant  that  I  may  behold  the  fruits  of  your  labours  in 
the  heavenly  country;  inasmuch  as  ahhough  it  is  not  per- 
mitted me  to  labour  with  you,  I  shall  be  found  with  you  in 
the  joys  of  the  i^eward,  because  I  am  willing  to  partake  of 
your  labours.  God  have  you  in  his  holy  lj»eping,  my  well- 
bekryed  sons !  Dated  on  the  tenth  of  the  kalends  of  August, 
in  the  fourteenth  year  of  the  reign  of  our  Lord  Matmtius^ 
Tiberius,  the  most  pious  Augustus ;  and  in  the  fourteenth 
indietion." 

Beassured  by  this  message  from  the  holy  Father,  the  mis- 
skmaries  pursued  their  journey  to  Britain  ^  At  &at  time 
Ethelbert  was  king  of  Kent,  and  possessed  <rf  ^eat  power ; 
for  he  had  ^srtended  the  frontier  of  his  dominuHis  to  the 
Humber,  a  great  river  whdch  is  the  boondaiy  between  the 
southern  and  n^orthem  tribes  of  the  Sasims.  On  the  eastern 
side  of  Kent  Mes  Thanet,  an  iedaiid  of  considerab^  s^ 
eontasning  after  the  English  way  of  reckoning  600  &miliesv 
The  river  Wantsum,  which  sepamtes  it  from  the  main-land, 
is  abocut  three  fdrlongs  wide,  and  is  todable  in  two  places 
c«i§f ,  bo^  ends  of  it  benxg  estnarres.  Angustsne,  the  ser- 
-vant  of  God,  with  his  companions,  being,  as  i&  reported, 
nearly  froty  m«n,  having  landed  en  this  island,  they  an^ 
nomieed  to  the  king  hj  their  ia^erpretexs^  that  they  were 
eome  hom  Eome,  and  were  besrero  of  a  joyfid  messagB^ 
whieh  bq^ond  all  douit  assnFol  to  those  who  oiheyed  it 

>  Be€U^bMki.2& 

F  3 


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68  HKNET  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  IH. 

eternal  joys  in  heaven,  and  an  everlasting  kingdom  with  the 
living  and  true  God.  The  King,  upon  hearing  this,  com- 
manded them  to  remain  in  the  island  in  which  they  had 
landed,  where  they  should  he  supphed  with  all  things 
necessary,  till  such  time  as  he  should  consider  how  he 
should  deal  with  them.  For  he  had  some  cognizance  of 
the  Christian  religion,  his  wife,  a  princess  of  the  nation  of 
the  Franks,  Bertha  hy  name,  heing  a  Christian :  having  heen 
given  to  him  by  her  parents  upon  the  express  condition, 
Qiat  she  should  have  full  liberty  to  preserve  her  feith  in- 
violate, and  to  practise  the  rites  of  her  rehgion  under  the 
ministration  of  Luidhard,  a  bishop  who  attended  her.  In  a 
few  days  time  the  King  crossed  over  to  the  island,  and,  seat 
ing  himself  in  the  open  air,  ordered  Augustine  and  his 
companions  to  be  invited  to  a  conference  with  him.  For 
he  was  cautious  not  to  meet  them  in  any  house,  lest,  accord- 
ing  to  an  ancient  superstition,  if  they  practised  any  magical 
arts,  they  might  unawares  gain  an  advantage  over  him. 
But  they  came  endowed  with  divine,  not  with  magical  virtue, 
a  silver  cross  and  a  picture  of  Our  Lord  and  Savioinr  being 
carried  before  them  as  their  ensigns,  while  they  chanted 
litanies  making  supplications  to  God  for  the  eternal  salva- 
tion of  themselves,  and  of  those  for  whom  and  to  whom 
they  were  come.  By  the  King's  command,  they  then  sat 
down  and  preached  to  him  and  his  attendants,  and  all  who 
were  present,  the  word  of  life.  After  which  the  King  thus 
replied : — "  Your  words  and  the  promises  you  hold  out  to 
us  are  indeed  specious ;  but  as  much  as  they  are  a  novelty 
and  hard  t>f  comprehension,  I  cannot  assent  to  them,  for- 
saking that  which  I  have  so  long  held  in  common  with  the 
whole  English  nation.  But  because  you  have  travelled 
hither  from  a  far  distant  country,  and,  as  far  as  I  can  judge, 
for  the  purpose  of  communicating  to  us  the  benefit  of  what 
you  believe  to  be  excellent  and  true,  so  far  from  molest- 
ing you,  it  is  our  wish  to  receive  you  with  generous  hospi- 
tality, and  to  take  care  you  are  supplied  with  whatever  is 
necessary  for  yoiur  subsistence.  Nor  do  we  prohibit  you 
from  converting  all  whom  you  are  able  to  persuade  by  your 
preaching  to  the  beUef  of  your  reUgion." 
Acc(»:dingly  he  assigned  them  a  residence  in  the  city  of 


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A.D.  597.]       ST.   AUGUSTINE   ENTERS   CANTERBURY.  69 

Canterbuiy,  which  was  the  metropolis  of  all  his  dominions, 
and,  pursuant  to  his  promise,  while  he  made  provision  for 
their  maintenance,  did  not  withhold  the  liberty  of  preaching. 

It  is  reported  that  as  they  drew  near  to  the  city,  carrying, 
according  to  their  custom,  the  holy  cross  and  the  image  of  our 
Sovereign  Lord  and  King  Jesus  Christ,  they  sung  in  concert 
this  litany :  "  We  beseech  thee,  O  Lord,  of  thy  infinite 
inercy,  that  thy  wrath  and  thy  anger  be  turned  away  from 
this  city,  and  from  us  thy  holy  family,  notwithstanding  we 
have  sinned  against  thee.     Hsdlelujah !  " 

As  soon  as  they  were  settled  within  the  city^,  they  devoted 
themselves  to  the  course  of  life  practised  in  the  primitive 
church  from  apostolical  times,  and  by  their  heavenly-minded 
frame  and  conversation,  and  the  sweetness  of  ^eir  doc- 
trine, brought  many  to  believe  and  be  baptized.  They  ad- 
ministered baptism  and  said  mass  in  the  church  of  St. 
Martin^,  to  the  east  of  the  city  built  in  former  times  by  the 
Britons,  in  which  the  Queen  Bertha,  already  mentioned,  had 
been  accustomed  to  pray.  But  when  the  King,  attracted, 
like  others,  by  the  pure  life  of  these  holy  men,  and  by  the 
miracles  they  wrought,  became  a  convert  to  the  faith,  great 
numbers  were  added  to  the  church  of  Christ.  But  though 
he  embraced  these  with  more  affection,  yet  he  compelled 
none  to  embrace  Christianity ;  for  he  had  learnt  from  the 
authors  of  his  own  Salvation,  that  the  service  of  Christ 
ought  to  be  voluntary,  and  not  by  compulsion.  Nor  was  it 
long  before  he  granted  them  a  fixed  abode,  and  conferred 
on  them  whatever  possessions  their  new  society  required. 
And  now  Augustine,  the  man  of  God,  repaired  to  Aries, 
and  was  consecrated  archbishop  by  JEtherius,  archbishop  of 
that  city,  in  compliance  with  the  command  of  our  Lord  the 
Pope.  On  his  return  to  Britain,  he  sent  to  Kome  Lauren- 
tius  the  priest,  by  whom  he  transmitted  to  the  Pontiff  ac- 
counts of  what  had  taken  place,  and  also  consulted  him  as 
to  his  future  conduct,  by  submitting  to  him  nine  questions ; 
for  the  answers  given  to  which  by  the  Pope,  as  they  are 

»  Bede,  book  I  25,  26. 

'  The  chuich  of  St.  Martin,  near  Canterbury,  which  has  been  recently 
restored,  preienti  an  appearance  of  great  antiquity ;  and  if  the  walls  and 
foundations  are  not  the  identical  structure  here  mentioned,  the  masonry  is 
composed  of  the  same  materials,  Soman  bricks  being  worked  up  in  it» 


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no  HENBT  OF  rannnraMm.  [book  m. 

BoamwtMt  long,  lihe  reader  is  referred  te  the  books  kivhick 
tbe  eedesiaetieal  canons  and  deeroes  ane  coiitainod. 

{jjD,  601.]  ^  Mffl^over,  fhe  aame  Pope  Gbsogoiy  Bent  fixun 
Borne  at  the  same  time  to  Aiigusiiaie  ihe  Indskoip  seiFeral 
^Uow-labovrers  «ad  miaiflteis  c^  tiie  wood,  of  vhogoi  the 
ficBt  and  bhief  weve  MeUttus,  Jt»tii8,  Pauliiiiis, and  Bufiaonui; 
and -with  ^em  sacred  vesaeb  and  vestnaentB,  boo^,  aed 
tiie  necesaaiy  oasamentfi  for  tiie  dhurches.  He  sent  alao  a 
letter,  of  wb^  tiie  foUonrmg  is  a  copy: — 

"  To  his  most  revermid  and  holy  brother  ami  fdHaw-hishojp 
Aajgwiine^  Qregwy,  ^  servcuU  of  d^  servamiB  of  ^ML 

**  AltfaoQ^  we  aee  aasored  that  the  tinq>eakaUe  rewards 
of  ihe  eternal  kingdom  ave  reserved  for  those  who  labour 
&r  Almighty  God^  yet  it  k  requisite  d»at  we  imvest  them 
vith  honouniible  ^a^ictions,  to  the  end  tha/t  by  this  revavd 
tkey  may  be  qualified  for  nuHie  abandaat  labours  in  Hie 
perfoimanoe  of  Ifti^spiiataaiAuty.  And  mnegaiMl  that  the 
nevly-fonnded  F4[igtiiifa  chvrdi  has  been  brought  to  ezTjoy 
Itae  ^Yonr  oi  Almighty  God,  by  his  meiey  Bod  yoor  labours, 
we  ^cBJOt  yon  the  nae  of  Ihe  pall  in  the  aame  dudiig  the 
perfonnance  only  ^  Ihe  sendee  of  tibe  amoB :  so  that  jsoa 
oidaia  tvsdve  bishc^s  in  so  many  several  sees  who  shall  be 
sobjeotio  your  jurttdictioa.  Thus  ihe  bishop  of  Loiklan^ 
shall  &>r  ihe  &tui»  always  be  eonseerated  by  his  own  synod, 
waA  will  receive  the  honour  of  the  pall  &om  tiiis  holy  and 
apostolical  see,  wbkh,  by  tiie  grace  of  God,  I  now  senile. 
But  we  win  have  you  sand  to  York  a  bishop,  to  be  chosen 

^  It  vei^  appear  to  knee  been  P<^  Giegory's  inteafion  that,  after  the 
dealh  of  St  Augaitine  at  least,  London  should  be  the  metropolitan  see 
t»f  the  south  of  E^land,  «id  York  of  Hit  north,  as  those  two  cities  were  in 
the  Ibnes  of  ikt  ancient  Bnlish  ohnooSi  Angnstine  hiiaself  is  said,  by 
Parher,  in  lus  Antiquities  of  Britain,  to  hare  been  consecrated  bf  the  generd 
title  of  "BiAoip  iS.  the  EiyUsh."  This,  however^  was  contrary  to  the 
primitiye  and  usual  custom  which  deri:red  the  tide  of  a  bishop  from  some 
particular  city.  We  i3iall  find  presentiy  iSiat  St  Augustine  is  said  to  ha^e 
fixed  the  eps«)pal  seat  of  himself  aaid  his  successors  in  Christ  Chundt,  tbeo, 
as  it  still  is,  the  cathedral  of  Canterbury.  In  compliance,  therefore,  with 
this  designation,  and  from  respect  to  St  Augustine's  msaiory,  as  iuudng  there 
hb— red  aad  govemed,  as  "mU  as  probably  from  the  circumstance  «f  that 
«ky  baiag  the  capital  of  the  £rat  and  greatest  of  the  AngkhSaxon  luQg- 
dona,  tke  onginaldakas  of  London  and  the  rascDpt  of  Peps  Qsobgfttj  woe 
disregarded,  aiid.  th«  pimaey  vai  fixed  at  Canterlmry. 


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JLD.  (^7.]      POPE   CBCBOQBT's  XETTEB  !ED  ST.   AUGUSTINE.       71 

«Dd  (xniaiiied  by  you,  so  that,  if  that  city^,  with  the  places 
m  its  ziei^i]K)urhood,  shall  receiTe  me  word  of  Ood, 
amch  bidiop  sludl  also  ordain  twelye  suffiragans,  and  have 
BMAropolhan  nak.  Oa  him  also,  if  we  live,  it  is  our  design, 
by  the  help  of  God,  to  confer  the  pallimn,  and  yet  we  mil 
Ittire  him  to  submit  to  your  aathori^.  But  after  your  de- 
ense,  he  shall  so  preside  over  the  bishops  he  shall  ordsdn, 
as  te  be  no  wise  subject  to  the  jurisdiction  of  the  bi^op  of 
LtCMidon.  But  for  the  ^rturo  let  Ihe  distinction  of  rank 
bctnueen  the  bishops  of  the  cities  of  London  and  York  be 
this,  that  he  shall  hare  the  preoedenoe  who  is  first  ordained. 

^'Let  thom,  howeerm*,  toke  order  with  unanimity,  by 
common  counsel  and  uniform  proceedings,  for  whatever  is 
to  be  done,  with  Christian  zeal.  Let  them  determine  rightly, 
ajul  what  they  detonnine  let  1i\em  cany  into  execution 
wiUJiout  disagnsement  with  eadi  other.  Meanwhile,  you, 
my  brother,  shall  have  subject  to  you  in  our  Lord  Jesus 
CJurist  not  only  the  bishops  who  shall  be  ordained  by  you, 
aad  those  who  shall  be  ordained  by  the  bishop  of  York, 
but  all  the  priests  in  Biitain,  to  the  end  that  from  your 
mouth  and  your  example  of  a  holy  life  they  may  be  taught 
ix>th  to  bdU^  righdy  and  to  live  well,  and  thus  fuUSUing 
their  office  with  a  true  Mth  and  right  conversation,  they 
may,  when  it  shall  please  the  Lord,  attain  to  the  heavenly 
kingdom.  May  God  have  you,  most  reverend  brother,  in 
Ms  safe  keeping. 

"  Dated  the  10th  of  the  Kalends  of  July,  in  the  17th  year 
of  the  reign  of  4Mir  Loni  Manricius  Tiberius,  most  pious 
Augustus." 

While  the  before-named  delegates  were  on  their  way  to 
Britaui,  the  Apostolical  Father  sent  after  them  letters, 
wherein  he  plainly  shows  how  concerned  he  was  for  the 
^iritual  wd&EPe  of  cur  nation^.     Hius  he  wrote : — 

'*  To  his  mott  bdoved  son  MeiUtttSy  the  Ahhot ;  Gregory  the 
senmU  of  the  Mnumts  «f  God. 

*'  Since  the  dq»rture  of  those  we  assodated  with  you, 
-me  have  been  very  anxious  because  no  tidings  have  readied 
KU  of  the  mceeos  of  your  journey.      Wiien,  however,  Al- 

iBede,boflki.^. 


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72  HENBY  OP  HUNTINGDON.  [boOK   IH. 

mighty  God  shall  have  conducted  you  safely  to  the  most 
reverend  Bishop  Augustin,  our  brother,  tell  him  what,  after 
long  deUberation  on  English  afl&drs,  I  have  determined 
upon,  viz.  that  the  temples  of  idols  in  that  nation  ought 
by  no  means  to  be  pulled  down ;  but  let  the  idols  that  are 
in  them  be  destroyed;  let  holy  water  be  consecrated  and 
sprinkled  in  the  said  temples ;  let  altars  be  nused  and  relics 
deposited  under  them.  For  if  these  temples  are  well  built, 
it  is  requisite  that  they  be  converted  from  the  worship  of 
devils  to  the  service  of  the  true  God;  that  the  people 
seeing  that  their  temples  are  not  destroyed  may  cast  out 
error  from  their  hearts,  and  knowing  and  adoring  the  true 
God,  may  the  more  familiarly  resort  to  places  at  which  they 
have  been  used  to  worship.  And  inasmuch  as  they  have 
been  accustomed  to  slaughter  many  oxen  in  their  sacrifices 
to  devils,  some  solemnity  ought  to  be  substituted  for  this : 
on  the  anniversary  of  the  feast  of  dedication,  or  the  nativi- 
ties of  the  holy  martyrs  whose  relics  are  there  deposited, 
they  may  erect  booths  with  the  boughs  of  trees  round  those 
churches  which  have  been  converted  fix)m  temples,  and 
celebrate  the  commemoration  with  religious  feasting.  Let 
them  no  more  oflfer  victims  to  the  devil,  but  slaughter  cattle 
to  the  praise  of  God  in  their  eating,  rendering  thanks  in 
their  fidness  to  the  Giver  of  all  things ;  that  so  while  some 
fleshly  enjoyments  are  outwardly  permitted,  they  may  more 
readily  be  moved  to  inward  and  spiritual  joys.  For  it  is, 
doubtless,  impossible  to  extinguish  the  desire  for  such  in- 
dulgences from  obdurate  minds,  and  he  who  endeavours  to 
mount  to  a  lofty  summit,  ascends  by  degrees  or  steps,  and 
not  by  leaps.  Thus  tiie  Lord  revealed  himself  to  the 
people  of  Israel  in  Egypt ;  but,  permitting  the  use  of  sacri- 
fices, He  reserved  to  his  own  worship  what  before  they 
were  accustomed  to  oflfer  to  devils ;  commanding  them  to 
sacrifice  animals  in  the  worship  of  Himself,  to  the  end  that, 
changing  their  hearts,  one  thing  in  sacrifice  they  might 
abolish,  another  they  might  retain;  that  although  the 
animals  were  the  same  they  were  wont  to  oflfer,  yet  now 
being  oflfered  to  God  and  not  to  idols,  the  sacrifices  were  no 
longer  the  same.  These  things,  beloved,  we  require  you  to 
commimicate  to  our  brother  aforesaid,  that  he  being  now 


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jLD.  601.]    gbeooby's  letteb  bespeoting  miracles.        73 

present  on  the  spot  may  consider  how  he  may  order  all 
things.  May  God  have  you,  most  heloved  son,  in  his  holy 
keeping. 

"  Dated  this  15th  of  the  Kalends  of  July,  in  the  19th 
year  of  the  reign  of  the  Emperor  our  Sovereign  Lord  Mau- 
ricius  Tiberius,  most  pious  Emperor;  the  18th  year  after 
the  consulship  of  our  said  Lord;  the  fourth  indiction." 

At  the  same  time  he  sent  Augustine  a  letter  ^  concerning 
miracles  wrought  by  him,  warning  him  against  being  puflfed 
up  by  reason  of  them.     The  letter  was  in  these  words : — 

"  I  learn,  most,  dearly  beloved  brother,  that  Almighty 
God  works  miracles  by  your  hands  in  the  midst  of  the 
nation  which  it  has  been  his  will  to  choose  for  himself. 
Wherefore  it  is  necessaiy  that  you  rejoice  with  trembling, 
and  fear  in  rejoicing  for  this  heavenly  gift ;  that  you  should 
rejoice  because  the  souls  of  the  English  are  by  outward 
signs  drawn  to  inward  grace;  but  that  you  should  fear,  lest, 
amidst  the  miracles  which  are  wrought,  the  weak  mind  be 
lifted  up  with  presumption,  and  as  it  is  externally  raised  to 
honour,  it  may  thence  inwardly  fall  through  vain  glory. 
For  we  must  call  to  mind  that  when  the  disciples  returned 
rejoicing  from  preaching  the  word,  and  said  to  their 
heavenly  Master,  *  Lord,  in  thy  name,  even  the  devils  are 
subject  to  us,*  they  were  forthwith  told,  *  Eejoice  not  for  this, 
but  rather  rejoice  for  that  your  names  are  written  in  heaven.* 
For  they  fixed  their  thoughts  on  selfish  and  temporal  joy 
while  they  rejoiced  in  miracles,  but  they  were  recalled  from 
rejoicing  in  tihemselves  to  joy  for  others,  from  transitory  to 
eternal  joys,  when  it  was  said,  *  Eejoice  for  this,  that  your 
names  are  written  in  heaven.'  For  not  all  the  elect  work 
miracles,  and  yet  the  names  of  all  are  written  in  heaven.' 
For  the  disciples  of  the  truth  ought  not  to  rejoice  save  for 
the  good  which  they  have  in  common  with  others,  and  their 
enjoyment  of  which  is  without  end. 

**  It  remains,  therefore,  brother  most  beloved,  that  amidst 
those  outward  signs,  which  by  the  operation  of  the  Lord 
you  openly  work,  you  inwardly  judge  yourself  and  clearly 
understand  both  what  you  are  yourself,  and  how  much  grace 
there  is  in  that  nation  for  whose  conversion  you  have  even 
received  the  gift  of  working  miracles.  And  if  you  remem- 
1  Bede,  book  i.  81. 


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74  MEMir  ov  WDKms^ocBL  {book  m. 

her  iSbat  yon  lame  at  anj  time  offaeded  our  Creator,  eaidaer 
by  -winA  or  deed,  yon  -wiR  coirtiimaHy  call  these  things  to 
mind,  that  the  memory  of  your  guilt  may  suppross  the 
fsride  idnth  nsee  in  your  heart ;  and  wihaiewer  you  siiall 
rao^Ye,  or  have  reeeiTsd,  in  leeiatioii  to  woiidng  miracles, 
lint  you  consider  &e  saaie  not  as  eouiiBrred  on  you,  bat  on 
those  ferinlioBe  saltation  these  gi&s  hare  been  Toodisafed 
10  you." 

¥ape  OivgOfy  sent  a  letter  also  to  King  Eth^bertS  wiib 
presents  of  fvrious  kinds,  diat  1m  might  hcoicmr  wiih  worldly 
offiarings  him  wlu«i  he  had  been  the  means  of  endowing 
mkh  spiiitual  blessangs : — 

^  Tq  th$  mmt  iUiuiriatm  lard,  amd  our  mwt  ^KtHlenl  jow, 
EauiB)mty  Ttms  of  ihs  Ens/Uth,  Gregory,  bishop, 

"  It  is  for  iMs  purpose  that  Afanighty  God  piomotos  ihe 
good  to  be  rukxs  of  liiye  people,  that  by  them  fie  may  impart 
the  bounties  of  his  merey  to  tl»>8e  o^er  idiiom  they  are  set 
This  we  know  to  hsF«  been  done  in  tilie  £ngli^  nation 
Qveat  whom  your  majesty  was  placed  in  ovder  that  l^  means 
of  tiie  ^yilege  which  has  been  ipouchsafed  to  ns,  heavenly 
b^iefits  maj  be  conferred  on  the  pec^le  your  subjects. 
Vremerve,  therefove,  witii  care,  my  illustrious  son,  the  grace 
wMcfa  has  been  divin^y  gbwn  you,  and  l»6ten  to  ext^id 
ihe  Ohristian  hkth  amfong  the  nactions  subject  to  your  role. 
Let  Ihe  eamestaess  of  3^our  zeal  for  their  couT^ersion  be 
iBfcreased ;  suppress  d^  worship  of  idols,  overdirow  Iheir 
temples ;  edify  tiie  minds  of  yoor  siibjects,  «i!id  purify  iheir 
morals  by  ezhortati<ni,  by  tibieat^m^,  by  gendeoess,  by 
correction,  and  by  setting  them  an  example  of  good  con- 
duct, that  you  may  have  your  iteward  in  heaven  £K>m  Him 
whose  name  and  whose  Imowledge  you  shali  spread  abroad 
^^n  earth.  For  Ble  will  rendK^  your  name  gknious  eren 
to  foture  generations,  whose  honour  you  seek  and  defend 
among  the  nations. 

''  For  thus  in  <dd  tunes  Oonstantine,  the  most  pious 
emperor  of  Eome,  i^co^raing  the  commonrwealjtk  &K)m  the 
perverted  ivofrehkp  oiSfered  to  idols,  subjected  it,  toigether 
with  himseif,  to  Almighly  God  and  our  Lord  Jesus  Ohri^, 
md,  was  wi^  his  whole  heart  and  whh^  the  nations  his 

>  Bedi^  book  i  B2. 


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AS).  Ml.]  LET13S  iCO  sura  ETmBKSXBT.  75 

:«il)9ects  oonveitei  to  flinau  Whence  k  flowed  tbift;  Hie 
^L(xy^  oi  ihk  prinoe  ixaBBoeoA&d  that  &£  IbiiniMr  «mpei0rs, 
cobd  ike  te  mtieii  exodled  fais  piBdeoeBsors  in  penown  as  he 
^M  in  good  -vrarks.  Now,  ^emhre,  let  yi^imt  iilwiitrwrnmeas 
hui^n  lo  mfase  ihe  kno'wiedge  of  ih»  one  God,  Ftttiier, 
Sob,  and  Holy  Spnit,  among;  die  kange  mnd  people  that  tre 
sdbjeet  to  jou,  that  yon  may  botik  snipesB  the  i^nner  kinga 
of  your  nation  in  fame  and  Bfterit,  and  the  more  yon  ndpe 
jMray  the  sins  «f  other  nen  among  yonr  subjects,  by  so 
wendi  Ihe  mom  you  may  ifind  secur^  against  your  own 
cinB  befoiQ  the  teisible  judgment  ^  Almighty  God. 

"  Our  most  reTarend  brother  Augustine,  your  bishop,  is 
veil  io^imned  hi  Ihe  nuHiastle  rules,  ^ili  of  the  knowledge 
«f  the  Holy  Bd^s^tmres,  and  by  die  grade  ^  God  endi^ 
wkh  good  works;  ^nhatever  ctdmonitions,  iheretoe,  yon 
receive  &^om  him,  hear  inHingly,  de^ontly  follow,  and  cax^ 
faHy  retain  in  your  memory.  For  if  yon  listen  to  him  in 
ivhat  he  ^eaks  for  AksBA^i^  God,  he  wiM  be  more  readily 
heavd  by  Almi^bly  God  when  he  prays  lor  you.  But  if 
(which  God  foihidl)  yon  disregard  his  words,  how  «fai 
Aimighly  God  listen  to  Iriin  on  your  bdia^  whom  you 
B^ect  to  hear  for  God's  safce?  Unite  yoars<^,  tha:«fore, 
wMbl  him  in  Ihe  ietrvafOT  of  faith  with  all  your  mind,  and  in 
Issuance  on  that  grace  whidi  has  been  diTm^y  conmium- 
oftted  to  you  tiirongh  him ;  furtiier  has  endeayours  that  he 
may  make  you  a  partakBr  of  this  kingdom  whose  faith  yon 
canse  to  be  received  and  m^i^fca^Eied  in  yonr  own. 

"  Mioreo¥^,  we  woiM  hare  you,  illisstrions  king,  to 
«nderstand  that  as  we  find  in  Hdj  Smpture  £rom  the 
^mrdB  of  Ihe  Almi^ly  Lord,  th»t  ^  end  of  the  present 
woild  is  near,  and  the  kiagdom  of  the  saints  which  can 
never  end  is  about  to  come.  But  as  this  end  of  tbe  world 
draws  near,  many  things  are  st  hand  whidi  have  not  before 
happened,  as  changes  in  ihe  air,  terrible  signs  in  ihe 
heavens,  t^Dopests  avA  oi  Ihe  coanmon  order  o£  tibie  seasons, 
ivars,  famines,  pcrtakneee,  eadh^poakes  in  varions  placai ; 
flfl  which  wfll  not  indeed  happen  in  our  dm,  but  a^ior  our 
days  all  will  come  to  pass.  If  yon,  then,  nnd  any  of  these 
dungs  to  happen  In  your  country,  let  not  your  mind  he  any 
way  disturbed,  for  these  tokens  of  the  end  of  the  worid  ju« 
sent  before  in  order  that  we  may  he  «areM  iar  our  oouls, 


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76  HENBY  OP  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  m. 

looking  for  the  hour  of  our  deatih,  and  that  we  may  be 
found  prepared  by  good  works  to  meet  the  impending  judg- 
ment. Thus  much,  my  illustrious  son,  I  have  now  shortly 
spoken,  that  when  the  faith  of  Christ  shall  have  further 
increased  in  your  kingdom,  our  discourse  to  you  may  grow 
more  full,  and  it  will  be  our  pleasure  to  say  the  more,  in 
proportion  as  the  joys  of  our  heart  for  the  entire  conversion, 
of  your  people  are  multiplied. 

"  I  have  sent  you  some  presents,  which  are  small  indeed^ 
but  which  will  not  be  trifling  if  tliey  are  accepted  by  you 
accompanied  with  the  benediction  of  the  blessed  apostle 
Peter,  May  Almighty  God  perfect  his  grace  which  he  has 
begun  in  you,  prolonging  your  life  here  for  the  course  of 
many  years,  and  after  a  lengthened  period  receive  you  inta 
the  society  of  the  blessed  in  the  heavenly  country.  May 
the  divine  favour  preserve  your  excellency  in  safety. 

"  Given  the  10^  day  of  the  Kalends  of  July,  in  the  19th 
year  of  the  reign  of  our  Sovereign  Lord  Maiuitius  Tiberius, 
our  most  pious  Emperor,  in  the  18th  year  after  the  consul- 
ship of  our  said  Lord ;  the  fourth  indiction." 

There  had  been  a  church  built  fonnerly  by  the  Koman 
Christians  in  what  was  now  become  the  royal  city^.  This 
church  Augustine  dedicated  to  the  honoiu:  of  our  blessed 
Saviour^,  and  made  it  the  episcopal  seat  of  himself  and  his 
successors.  The  King  also  erected  to  the  east  of  the  city 
the  church  of  St.  Peter  and  St.  Paul,  in  which  the  bodies 
of  the  archbishops  of  Canterbury  and  the  kings  of  Kent 
might  be  buried.  The  first  abbot  of  this  church  was  the 
priest  Peter  ^,  who,  having  been  sent  ambassador  to  France, 
was  drowned  in  a  creek  of  the  sea  which  is  called  Amfleat*, 

*  Bede^  book  i.  33. 

^  Christ  Church,  still  the  cathedral  of  Canterbury.  The  oldest  part  of 
the  present  structure  was  founded  in  1085,  on  the  site  of  the  ancient  Roman- 
British  church,  restored  by  St.  Augustine. 

^  '  Henry  of  Huntingdon  does  not,  except  by  naming  the  first  abbot,  men- 
tion, as  Bede  does,  the  monastery  which  was  attached  to  this  church,  and 
founded  at  the  same  time  by  Ethelbert  It  was  afterwards  called  St.  Au- 
gustine's Abbey,  and  was  for  many  ages  one  of  the  most  magnificent  and 
celebrated  in  the  kingdom.  After  being  ruined  and  long  desecrated,  the 
Bite,  with  part  of  the  remains,  has  recenSy  been  restored  to  sacred  uses,  as 
a  missionary  college. 

*  Ambleteuse^  near  Boulogne. 


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A.D.  605.]  DEATH  AND  CHARACTEB  OF  OBEGOBT  THE  GKBAT.  77 

and  being  unknown  was  hiunbly  interred  by  the  inhabitants 
of  the  place.  But  Ahnighty  God,  to  show  the  merit  of  such 
a  man,  caused  a  Ught  from  heaven  to  appear  over  his  grave 
every  night,  until  the  neighbours  noticing  it  imderstood 
that  he  who  was  there  biuied  was  a  holy  man,  and  making 
inquiries  who  and  whence  he  was,  they  disinterred  the 
body,  and  carried  it  to  the  city  of  Boulogne,  where  they 
deposited  it  in  the  church  with  the  honour  due  to  so  great 
ft  person. 

In  the  year  of  grace  605,  the  second  of  the  reign  of  the 
Emperor  Phocas,  Pope  Gregory  the  Great  exchanged  this 
life  for  that  which  is  true^.  He  was  a  Boman  by  nation 
and  noble  by  birth,  but,  surrendering  the  wealth  attached 
to  his  rank,  he  devoted  himself  to  a  monastic  life.  In 
course  of  time,  however,  he  was  withdrawn  from  his 
monastery  and  sent  to  Constantinople  as  his  surrogate  by 
Pope  Felix^.  While  there  he  conunenced  his  commenta- 
ries on  the  Book  of  Job,  which  he  completed  after  he 
became  pope.  While  there  he  also  refuted  the  Eutychian 
heresy  in  the  presence  of  the  emperor^.  He  composed 
also  an  excellent  book  called  "The  Pastoral,"  and  fovir 
books  of  Dialogues,  and  forty  Homilies ;  with  an  explana- 
tion of  the  first  and  last  parts  of  the  prophecy  of  Ezekiel. 
Through  all  his  youth  he  was  tormented  with  pains  in  the 
bowels,  and  weakness  of  the  stomach,  and  was  constantly 
suffering  from  a  slow  fever.  Thus  much  may  be  said  of 
bis  immortal  genius,  which  could  not  be  restrained  by  such 
severe  bodily  pain.  Other  popes  busied  themselves  in 
embellishing  churches;  but  Gregory  bestowed  all  wealth 
on  the  poor;  so  that  the  words  of  holy  Job  may  be  applied 
to  him : — "  When  the  ear  heard  me,  then  it  blessed  me ; 
and  when  the  eye  saw  me,  it  gave  witness  to  me :  because 
I  delivered  the  poor  that  cried,  and  the  fatherless,  and  him 
that  had  none  to  help  him.  The  blessing  of  him  that  was 
ready  to  perish  came  upon  me :  and  I  caused  the  widow's 
heart  to  sing  for  joy.    I  put  on  righteousness  and  clothed 

1  Bede,  book  u.  1. 

*  Felix  ly.  was  Bishop  of  Borne  a.d.  526. 

^  Bede  calls  him  "  Tiberini  Oonstantine,"  but  there  was  no  such  emperor. 
St.  Gregory  was  at  Constantinople  in  the  early  part  of  the  reign  of  Jua^ 


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lajnelf  as  wi^  a  ganwmt,  ansk  avf  jvilace  was:  as  &  iiadeau 
I  ii«g  flQ  6ye  to  t^e  b&id,  and  a  foot  ta  the  kme.  I  wag  s 
fadber  of  the  pooc,  and  the  eaiose  iridefe  I  knefvr  mot  I  ctti- 
gusOj  searched  out.  I  haike  tlie  janfs  of  tJie  widced,  and 
{^oeked  tiie  picj  frcnn  his  teeth."  AjmE  a  lattAe  after  hm 
says : — *'  If  I  have  disregarded  Hie  desire  of  the  poor,  aad 
hfl^e  caiBsed  the  eyes  of  &e  widow  to  wmt  in  wn,  if  I  haif« 
eaten  my  morsel  selfishly,  and  Ihe  £edlieiless  hath  oot  par- 
taken thereof  with  me,  for  from  my  youth  pity  grew  «p 
with  me,  and  horn  mj  mother's  womb  h  oame  fc»rth  with 
me."' 

Among  other  fidngs  TdikiL  this  holy  pope  did^  be  eaosofll 
masses  to  be  celeioated  0¥er  the  relics  of  St.  Plster  and 
St  Paol;  and  ion  the  service  of  the  moss  he  added  tivee 
sentences  of  t^e  fairest  perfection : — ^*  Dispose  our  da)jf» 
in  thy  peaee;  preserve  us  firom  etevnal  damnatRm;  and 
rank  us  in  the  number  of  thine  elect !"^  It  is  repaeied 
also,  as  Bede  tella  us,  tJiat  lius  maa  of  Gt>d,  going  one  da^ 
into  tiie  maorket-place,  saw  there  some  English  yentlis 
whose  bodies  and  countenances  and  hair  were  ex^eding^ 
fair.  He  learned,  upon  inquky,  that  th^  wn^e  just  arri<ved 
from  Bntian,  and  also  that  they  were  hobtfaens.  Upoa 
wiiidi  he  ezdadmel  with  a  si^ : — "^Alas  t  how  sad  that  Ihe 
aothor  of  darkness  has  in  bis  power  men  of  so  fair  a  coimt- 
tenanee."  Again  he  iatquired,  **  what  was  t&e  name  of  thoA 
nation  ?  "  and  was  ansvTered  that  tiiey  were  called  Anglea. 
*'  It  is  well,"  be  said,  "  for  they  have  an  angel&c  fsiee,  and 
such  as  iiwy  ou^oit  to  be  coheirs  with  the  angds  ia 
heaven : "  adding, ''  Whst  is  the  name  of  tiie  proiiince  from 
which  they  are  l^rou^?"  It  was  leplied  that  the  nadwes 
of  that  province  were  called  Deki  K  "  Truly,"  said  he^ 
'^  they  are  f^eked  enrt  from  wrath,  '  Be  xr^'  and  eaEed  1» 
tbe  mercy  of  Christ:  How  is  tiie  Isiag  of  tiiat  provioce 
called?"  They  toM  hitn  that  has  nam^  was  Mil&;  upon 
wkid&,  in  aUusiioiL  to  tiae  name,  he  said,.  "  Aldujaih  nuBt 
fee  sm^  to  tbe  praise  of  God  m  those  regiensw."    Freaenir 

*  Job  xxix.  11-17  J  and  xxxi.  16-18.    According  to  tbe  Viriga*»i 

^  These  words  still  form  pact  of  the  Canon  of  iS»  maa  used  in  all  th» 

dnEPdwf  oi  thv  Boman  eomBnuuxni^  oenofuif  iff  t&e  Oflbrtary^  jnit  before 

Ifae' consMSBrtioB. 
'  The  ancient  name  of  the  kingdom  of  Korihumbria. 


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AJO.  dO&]    TOMB  AN»  UXBAlSi  09  QVtBMKS  THE   GBEAT.      7d 

ing  iMTttRAlf,  therefore,,  to  the  hishop  who  then  governed  the 
Eoman  church^,  for  he  himself  was  not  yet  pope,  he 
eutreaiied  that  he  would  commission  him  to  preach  the 
goie^el  in  that  country;  hut  not  heing  able  to  accomplish 
his  desire,  as  soon  as  he  was  advanced  to  the  primacy  he 
carried  into  execution,  by  means  of  others,,  the  work  on 
which  his  heart  had  long  been  set 

Gregory  was  interred  in  the  church  of  St  Peter  the 
Apostle  before  the  sacristy,  where  this  epitaph  is  inscribed 
on  his  tomb: — 

"  Sarth !  take  tliat  body  wluch  at  first  yon  ffsve^ 
Till  Gh)d  again  shall  raise  it  from  the  grare. 
The  soul  mounts  upwards  to  the  realms  of  dftj. 
Yanilj  tiie  pow'rs  of  tarkaaas  fCrife  to  stay 
Bim,  eVii  whoa»  death  fant  leads  to  life  the  imy. 
He,  best  of  prelates,  to  the  tomb  descends  f 
But  &me  his  good  deeds  through  the  world  extends. 
The  Saxon  race  he  taught  the  way  of  peace. 
And  to  the  fold  of  Christ  brought  fim  inervasR 
HsbI,  Qregeary;  Boman,  Christian^  sohfior,  luiLl 
The  knnis  of  thy  tduv^ht.  ne'ef  dttU  faik"  ^ 

Meanwhile  St.  Augustine  ordained  Justus  bishop  in 
DomlHrevi,  a  eity  of  Kent,  which  the  Engl^^  call  Bc^cester, 
from  one  of  their  dfcdefe  named  Eof.  King  Bthjelbert  founded 
tliere  a  church  dedicated  to  St  Andrew  the  apostle.  The 
place  i&  distant  from  Canterbury  24  miles. 

We  have  ncyw  completed  our  ta^of  (lowing  how  the 
kmg  and  people  of  Kent  were  cawnarted  to  l£e  frdtb  of 
Cbnst;  and  here  the  second  part  begins,  in  which  is  shown 
how  the  king  and  people  of  Essex,  that  is,  the  East^axons, 
ceeeived  the  word  of  God.  They  were  e'vangelized  hy 
Mellitar,  a  £utMixl  and  hdly  man,  who  was  aent  to  than  hf 
Augustine ;  being  at  that  time  governed  under  "Eihe^ertr 
whose  rnle»  as  we  have  said  before,  extended  over  liie  vt^ole 
Goiuitry  aa  fBcr  as  the  Humber,  by  his  n^hew  Sebert.  The 
BoiBBioin  pycmsg  suevessfiil,  and  the  king  Sebevt,  with  his 
people,  being  converted  to  the  froth,  King  Etheibert  lorai^il 
in  London  &e  dhurch  of  St  Ftolfer  an  epineopal  see,  and,. 

*  BsMwUsi  I.    Gcego^  himi^  was  madfr  Bisl^p  al  Boma  AJk  690, 
'  Henry  of  Hnntii^on  omits  some  lines  of  this  epitaph  giveft  1^  Badiw 


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80  HENBT  OP  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  m. 

munificently  endowing  it,  Mellitus  was  worthily  appointed 
bishop. 

[a.d.  603.]  Meanwhile^  Augustine,  with  the  assistance  of 
King  Ethelred,  assembled  the  bishops  or  doctors  of  the 
largest  and  nearest  province  of  the  Britons  at  a  place  which 
is  to  this  day  called  in  the  English  tongue  Augustine's  Ac, 
that  is,  "  Augustine's  oak,"  on  the  confines  of  the  Wiccii 
and  the  West-Saxons^.  There  was  a  controversy  with 
the  Scots  and  Picts  respecting  the  celebration  of  Easter  ^ 
and  when  they  refused  their  assent  to  the  unanswerable 
reasoning  of  Augustine,  it  was  mutually  agreed  that  the 
confirmation  of  their  several  opinions  should  rest  on  the 
healing  of  a  blind  man  of  the  English  race,  who  was  brought 
into  the  assembly.  When,  therefore,  the  priests  of  the 
Britons  were  unable  to  cure  him,  Augustine  bending  his 
knees  in  prayer  before  them  all,  restored  sight  to  the  blind 
man,  that  through  him  he  might  give  light  to  the  whole 
nation.  Afterwards*  the  Britons  and  Scots,  for  their  greater 
satisfaction,  sought  advice  as  to  what  they  should  do  fi:om  a 
certain  man  who  was  esteemed  to  be  wise  and  holy.    He 

'  Bede,  book  ii  2. 

^  The  Wiccii,  Hniccii,  or  Jagantei,  were  a  tribe  of  Britons  wbo  inhabited 
Worcestershire,  Warwickshire,  and  the  north  of  G^loucestershire.  On  the 
north  was  a  kindred  tribe,  the  Ordovices,  or  noble  Yiccii  [from  Vic,  a  war- 
rior, and  Ordf  honourable],  who  originaUj  possessed  Salop,  and  part  of 
Cheshire  and  North  Wales ;  and  afterwards  conquered  Worcestershire,  &c., 
from  the  Wiccii  proper. — Wkitaker*8  History  of  Manchester.  ReoTj  of 
Huntington  might,  therefore,  justly  describe  this  country  as  one  of  the 
largest  provinces  of  the  ancient  Britons,  being  divided  on  the  south-east 
from  the  kingdom  of  the  West-Saxons  by  the  river  Avon.  Aust,  a  village 
which  is  situated  just  above  the  confluence  of  that  river  with  the  Severn, 
where  the  synod  is  supposed  to  have  been  held,  answers  the  Archdeacon^s 
description  of  St  Augustine's  oak ;  being  on  the  confines  between  the  two 
provinces. 

^  The  ancient  British  and  Irish  churches  kept  the  feast  of  Baster  by  a 
cycle,  in  which  the  improvement  adopted  at  Bome  in  the  fifth  century  had 
not  been  introduced.  The  controversy  was  not,  as  generally  supposed,  be- 
tween the  practice  of  the  Boman  and  the  ancient  Bastem  churches.  See  note' 
to  Bede's  Bcclesiastical  History,  p.  104  of  the  present  series. 

*  This  incident  is  related  by  Bede  to  have  occurred  at  a  second  synod, 
held  at  Banchor,  now  BangorJscoed,  in  Flintshire,  where  there  was  a  cele- 
brated British  monastery.  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  in  his  imperfect  notice  of 
these  occurrences,  omita  to  mention  the  latter  synod,  and  confoies  ibe 
two  accounts. 


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A.D.  603.]  SYNOD  AT  BANGOB  81 

replied,  "  If  he  is  a  servant  of  God,  agree  with  him."  But 
they  said,  "How  shall  we  know  this?"  To  which  he  an- 
swered :  "  If  he  is  meek  and  humble  of  heart,  he  will 
appear  to  be  a  servant  of  God."  Upon  which  they  rejoined, 
" How  shall  we  know  that  he  is  humble?"  "  If,"  said  he, 
"  he  rises  up  when  you  approach  him,  consider  that  he 
receives  you  in  the  spirit  of  humility ;  but  if,  you  being 
more  in  number,  he  shall  yet  disdain  to  stand  up  to  you,  do 
you  disdain  to  submit  to  him."  When,  therefore,  they  met, 
and  Augustine,  who  was  seated  in  a  chair  after  the  Boman 
fashion,  did  not  rise  up  to  receive  them,  they  departed  with 
indignation  and  clamorous  reproaches.  To  whom  Augustine 
predicted  that  since  they  would  not  accept  the  peace  offered 
them  by  their  brethren,  they  would  have  war  with  them  as 
enemies,  and  that  if  they  would  not  preach  the  way  of  life 
to  the  English  nation,  they  would  undergo  by  their  hands 
the  penalty  of  death.  All  which  was  by  agency  of  Divine 
Providence  accomplished  just  as  he  foretold. 

For  afterwards  Ethelfrid,  the  formidable  king  of  the 
English,  of  whom  we  have  spoken^,  having  assembled  a 
vast  army,  made  an  immense  slaughter  of  the  perfidious 
nation  at  the  city  of  the  legions  which  is  called  by  the 
EngUsh  people  Lege-cester,  but  by  the  Britons,  more  cor- 
rectly, Kaer-legion'-*.  When  about  to  give  battle,  observing 
their  priests,  who  had  gathered  together  to  offer  prayers  to. 
God  on  behalf  of  the  soldiers  engaged  in  the  conflict, 
standing  in  a  place  of  some  safety,  he  inquired  who  they 
were,  and  for  what  purpose  they  were  thus  assembled? 
Most  of  them  belonged  to  the  monastery  of  Bangor,  in 
which,  it  is  reported,  the  number  of  the  monks  was  such, 
that  when  the  monastery  was  divided  into  seven  parts,  with 
a  superintendent  for  each,  none  of  these  divisions  con- 
tained less  than  300  men,  who  all  lived  by  manual  labour. 
Many  of  these  having  completed  a  three-days'  fast,  had 
now,  among  others,  joined  the  army  to  offer  their  prayers, 
having  one  named  BrocmaU  as  their  champion  to  pro- 
tect them  while  they  were  thus  engaged  from  the  swords 

'  King  of  Northnmbria. 

'  Chester,  tbe  Deva  of  the  Bomans,  which  was  garrisoned  by  the  legion 
caDed  the  twentieth  Valerian,  one  of  its  eight  auxiliary  cohorts,  the  Frisian, 
being  stationed  at  Manchester. — WkUaker^s  History, 

Or 


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82  HENBZ  OF  H;UNTIH0fX>N.  [BOOK  HI. 

of  &e  badNuriaas.  Whffli  Elng  EdielMd  ivae  informed  of 
thB  oecaskn  of  their  coming,  he  said,  ^  If,  then,  they  invoke 
tbeir  God  igamBt  vs,  truly  they  fig^t  against  us,  ^aou^ 
iSmj  are  unarmed,  inasmuch  as  tibey  oppose  ns  with  their 
hAatile  imprecations."  He  therefore  ecaumanded  that  the 
first  atisack  should  be  made  on  than,  and  then  destroyed 
the  remainder  of  the  impious  army,  not  without  great  loss 
oi  hia  own  troofts.  Of  those  who  came  to  pray,  it  is  said 
tluut  about  1^0^  were  6lain«  and  50  only  escaped  by 
flight  Bro(9Baii  and  his  followers,  turning  Iheir  backs 
on  the  «Damy  at  the  first  attack,  left  those  whom  he  ought 
t»  hvve  protected,  unarmed  and  defenceless,  to  the  swords  of 
the  assa^ants.  Thus  was  fiilfiUed  the  prediction  of  Angus- 
tine,  the  holy  bishop,  though  he  himself  had  been  translated 
long  before  to  the  celestial  kingdom;  that  those  perfidious 
men  should  suffer  the  punishment  of  temporal  death  also, 
beeanse  they  had  despised  the  offers  made  them  of  eternal 
salvation. 

Augustine,  bdoved  c^  God,  was,  indeed,  now  dead,  and  had 
been  buried  n^r  the  church  ai  Bt.  Peter  and  St  Paul,  but 
ontsidie  the  walls,  because  it  was  not  yet  finished  nor  coor 
seerated.  But  a£ter  its  consecration  by  his  successor  Lauren- 
tiiaa,  the  remains  were  tranali^Ted  with  due  honoiu:  to  tiie 
north  porch  of  the  ^urdi,  in  which  the  bodies  of  all  the 
archbiBhops  to  the  tiooe  of  Theodore  were  interred,  after 
which  tibie  poseh  could  contain  no  more.  The  following 
e]HtA{dx  is  inscribed  on  the  tomb  of  St.  Augustine : — 

''  Here  lies  the  Lord  Augustine,  first  archbishop  of  Can- 
terbuiy^  who,  baring  been  formerly  directed  here  by  the 
blessed  Gregory,  bishop  of  the  city  of  Rome,  and  strength- 
ened by  God  with  the  power  of  woiidng  miracles,  brought 
King  Ethehed  and  his  people  from,  the  worship  of  idols  to 
theMth  of  G^3i8t,  and  having  ended  the  days  of  his  office 
in  peace,  departed  this  life  the  seventh  of  the  kalends  of 
June,  during  the  i^ign  of  the  same  king." 

While  Augnadne  was  yet  alive  he  had  cons^eoted  Lao- 

^  See  Saxon  Clironicle,  A.D.  607.  The  number  there  stated  is  200.  *'It 
wai  originally  perhaps  in  the  MSS.  lice,  the  abbreriation  for  1200 ;  which 
M  the  nioiber  of  the  slainia  Bede.  The  anonks  of  Bangor  ase  said  to  have 
snnbered  2100 ;  most  of  irhsm  appear  to  haye  been  ffisployed  in  pnyer, 
and  only  50  escaped  by  f^i^^^-lnffram^ 


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A.B.  605-616.]  XAWBEHCE,   SBOOND  AJtCHBISHOP.  83 

renthis  as  his  soecessor  in  ihe  archbishoprie,  following  the 
example  of  St  Feter,  who  oidained  Oemens  in  like  manner, 
lest  upon  his  own  death  the  state  of  the  chnrdi,  as  yet  un- 
settled, should  totter  even  for  a  sin^e  hour.  Laurentius 
mdefatigably  built  up  the  rdigion  whidi  had  been  founded, 
not  only  superintoiding  with  care  the  new  churdi  of  the 
English  nation,  but  also  those  of  the  ancient  Britons  and 
Scots,  who  were  mistaken  in  the  time  of  keeping  Easter. 
To  them  he  sent  a  letter,  the  beginning  of  which  is  as 
^[^ows^: — 

"  To  ouw  most  dear  hrotkers  the  lords,  Ushops,  and  abbots, 
through  aU  Scotland,  Ixmrentius,  MeUUus,  and  JmUis,  hukops ; 
the  servants  of  ^  dervants  of  Ood, 

"  When  the  apostolic  see,  according  to  its  custom  through- 
out the  world,  sent  us  to  these  western  parts  to  preach  to 
heathen  nations,  it  happened  that  we  came  into  this  island 
without  any  previous  knowledge  of  its  inhabitants ;  but  we 
held  both  ihe  Britons  and  Scots  in  great  esteem  for  sanctity, 
believing  that  they  had  proceeded  according  to  the  custom 
of  the  imiversal  church.  And  when  we  became  acquainted 
with  the  usages  of  the  Britons,  we  thou^t  that  those  of  the 
Scots  were  better.  But  we  found  iiotn.  Daganus  the 
bishop,  and  Columban  the  abbot,  that  the  Scots  no  way 
differ  from  the  Britons  in  their  customs.  For  Dagan  the 
bishc^,  when  he  came  to  us,  refiised  not  only  to  eat  with 
xts,  but  in  the  saane  house  of  entertainment  in  which  we 
were." 

Mdlitus,  bibhop  of  London,  going  to  Bcnne,  was  |H*esent 
at  a  council  held  by  Pope^  Bom^Eice,  in  which  he  made  re- 
gulations concerning  ^e  peace  and  order  oi  the  monks.  It 
was  this  Pope  Boni&ee,  the  fcmrth  after  Pope  GregOTy,  who 
obtuned  from  the  Emperor  Phocas  the  temple  called  the 
Pantheon,  that  he  mi^t  dedicate  it  to  All  Saints. 

King  Ethelbert  died  a.d.  616,  and  in  the  fifty-sixth  year 
of  his  own  reign,  and  was  buried  in  the  church  of  St.  Peter 
and  St  Paul  before  mentioned^.  This  great  and  excellent 
man,  among  other  beneits  whidi  he  conferred  on  his  people, 
compiled  a  book  of  judicial  decrees.     After  the  death  of 

1  Bed^  book  li.  c  4.  >  Bade,  lM>ok  ii.  c.  5. 

a  2 


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B4  HENBT  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  ILL 

Ethelbert,  Eadbald,  his  son,  who  was  a  heathen,  took  his 
father*s  wife.  From  his  example  many  relapsed  into  their 
former  micleanness ;  but  the  king  was  pmiished  by  frequent 
:fits  of  madness.  On  the  death  also  of  the  king  of  the 
East-Saxons  he  left  three  sons  the  heirs  of  his  kingdom  who 
were  heathens.  Being  idolaters,  they  said  to  the  bishop, 
when  he  was  celebrating  the  mass :  "  Why  do  you  not  offer 
to  us  also  that  white  bread  which  you  used  to  give  to  our 
father,  and  still  hand  to  the  people  ? "  To  which  he  an- 
swered :  "If  you  consent  to  be  washed  in  that  layer  of  re- 
generation, in  which  your  father  was  washed,  you  also  may 
be  partakers  of  the  holy  bread  of  which  he  partook ;  but  if 
you  despise  the  water  of  life,  you  can  by  no  means  partake 
of  the  bread  of  life."  Whereupon  they  replied,  "  We  will 
not  enter  that  laver,  because  we  do  not  know  that  we  have 
any  need  of  it,  and  yet  we  choose  to  eat  of  that  bread." 
And  being  often  diUgently  admonished  by  him,  that  it  could 
by  no  means  be  permitted  that  any  one  should  partake  of  the 
holy  eucharist  without  the  holy  purification,  at  last  they  said 
in  a  rage,  "  If  you  will  not  comply  with  our  wishes  in  so 
small  a  matter,  you  shall  no  longer  dwell  in  our  country." 
And  they  banished  him  and  his  followers  from  the  kingdom. 
Being  thus  expelled,  he  came  into  Kent  to  consult  with  his 
fellow  bishops,  Laurentius  and  Justus,  what  was  to  be  done 
in  this  juncture.  Whereupon  it  was  unanimously  agreed 
that  they  should  aU  return  into  their  own  coimtry,  where 
they  might  serve  God  in  freedom,  than  continue  to  reside 
among  barbarians  who  had  renounced  the  faith.  Accord- 
ingly, MeUitus  and  Justus  departed  first,  withdrawing  into 
Gaid  with  the  intention  of  waiting  there  the  issue  of  affaurs. 
But  the  kings  who  had  driven  from  them  the  preachers  of 
the  truth,  did  not  long  continue  their  heathenish  worship 
unpunished,  for,  going  forth  to  battle  with  the  nations  of 
the  Gewissse,  they  were  all  slain,  together  with  their  army. 
However,  though  the  leaders,  in  their  wickedness,  were  cut 
off,  the  people  who  had  fallen  into  it  could  not  be  reclaimed 
and  restored  to  the  simplicity  of  the  faith  and  charity  which 
is  in  Christ. 

Laurentius  being  about  to  follow  Mellitus  and  Justus, 
and  to  quit  Britain,  ordered  his  bed  to  be  laid  the  night 


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A.D.  616-619.]       Lawrence's  vision,  and  death.  85 

before  in  the  church  of  the  blessed  apostles  Peter  and  Paul, 
which  has  been  often  mentioned^.  Here,  after  pouring 
forth  many  tears  and  supplications  to  God  for  the  state  of 
his  church,  he  composed  himself  to  rest.  While  he  was 
yet  sleeping  in  the  dead  of  the  night,  the  blessed  prince  of 
the  apostles  appeared  to  him  and  chastising  him  for  a  long 
time  with  sharp  stripes*,  demanded  with  apostoHcal  seve- 
rity, "  Why  he  was  forsaking  the  flock  which  he  had  com- 
mitted to  him?  or  to  what  shepherds  he  would  intrust 
Christ's  sheep  that  were  in  the  midst  of  wolves?  Hast 
thou,"  said  he,  "  forgotten  my  example,  who,  for  the  sake 
of  those  little  ones  whom  Christ  commended  to  me  in 
token  of  his  love,  suffered  at  the  hands  of  infidels,  his 
enemies,  bonds,  stripes,  imprisonment,  afflictions,  and  in 
the  end  death  itself,  the  death  of  the  cross,  that  I  might 
thereafter  share  his  crown  ?"  Thus  admonished,  Laurentius 
forthwith  related  all  this  to  the  king,  who,  struck  with  alarm, 
dissolved  his  illegitimate  marriage,  and  was  baptized.  He 
likewise  sent  to  recall  Mellitus  and  Justus  from  Gaul.  The 
people  of  Kochester  received  Justus,  but  the  Londoners 
rejected  Mellitus,  preferring  to  be  imder  their  idolatrous 
high-priests ;  for  Ejng  Eadbald  had  not  so  much  authority 
as  his  father,  so  that  he  was  unable  to  restore  the  bishop 
against  the  will  of  his  subjects. 

[a.d.  619.]  Laurentius  died  in  the  reign  of  Eadbald', 
and  was  succeeded  by  Mellitus,  bishop  of  London,  who  with 
the  co-operation  of  Justus,  bishop  of  Kochester,  governed 
the  English  church  with  much  diligence.  MeUitus,  indeed, 
was  afflicted  with  gout,  but  his  mind  was  sound.  He  was 
noble  by  birth,  but  much  more  noble  in  mind.  For  one 
mstance  of  his  virtue,  when  a  fire  broke  out  in  ihe  city  of 
Canterbury,  he  ordered  himself  to  be  carried  to  the  raging 
flames,  and  by  his  prayers  extinguished  the  conflagration. 
Justus,  bishop  of  Kochester,  succeeded  to  the  archbishopric 
after  the  death  of  Mellitus,  who  held  it  five  years. 

'  Bede,  book  u.  c.  6. 

'  In  Saxon  Chronicle,  Utenlly,  "swinged,  or  icourged  him.''  The  expression 
of  King  Alfred,  in  his  translation  of  B^e,  is  still  stronger.  But  both  Bedo 
and  Alfred  )}egin  by  recording  the  matter  as  a  vision,  or  a  dream,  whence  the 
transition  is  easy  to  a  matter  of  tact,  as  it  is  stated  by  Henry  of  Huntingdon 
and  all  their  copiers. 

'  Bede,  book  ii  c.  7* 


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M  BENBT  OOP  HCHTmODClI.  [BOOK  IIL, 

[▲.D.  <^4.}  Pope  Bomi&ce,  Hke  snoeessor  of  Bens-dedit, 
sent  him  the  pallhim  with  1^  letter  icDlowmg^ : — 

**  Benifitee  to  his  dearly  hdowd  brother  Justm. 

^  How  devoutly  and  diligezvlfy  your  findemity  has  lahoured 
f(x  the  gospel  of  Christ,  I  hare  learnt  not  only  from  the 
contents  of  your  epistle,  hut  from  the  suoeess  of  your  work. 
Almighty  Ood  hath  not  whhhdLd  the  hlessing  of  hk  saora- 
ments  nas  ^e  fruit  oi  your  labours,  having  regard  to  his 
sure  promise  to  the  ministers  of  his  gospel,  '  Lo !  I  aiDEk 
with  you  idway,  even  unto  the  end  of  ^  world.'  Fcwr  we 
have  received  accounts  from  our  son  Eadbald,  the  king»  hy 
which  we  perceive  with  bow  nmdi  wisdom  of  holy  elei^ 
quenee  your  fraternity  has  led  his  mind  to  emhxace  a  puore 
life  and  an  undonbtingly  sinc^e  faidi 

'^  We  have,  therefore,  beloved  Inrotfeker,  sen^yon  the  pttlhiiift 
by  the  bearer  ci  this  letter,  grantiDg  you  Mcemee  to  wear  it 
in  the  celebration  of  the  holy  mysteries,  and  also  p^rmittmg 
you  to  ordain  bishops,  the  grace  of  our  Lord  directing  ;)KMi^ 
as  occa^on  may  re^pnre ;  that  so  the  gospel  of  Christ  n^Xf 
be  made  known  by  the  preaching  oi  many  taaU  the  nationa 
which  are  not  yet  converted.  God  hare  you  in  his  Ba£» 
keeping,  most  b^oved  brother ! " 

Our  third  section  ccMmuenees  with  ihe  ccHkversion  of 
the  Northumbrians,  that  is,  of  tiie  people  who  inhabit  tbd 
country  to  the  nor^  of  the  Humbar.  'Hifiar  king,  Edwin,, 
had  been  raised  to  a  pitdDi  c^  tem|K)ral  poller  soch  as  na 
Engl^  king  had  enjoyed  before^;  for  his  rule  extended 
througho«xt  the  bomids  of  Britain,  and  all  the  porovineea 
which  were  inhaMted  either  by  English  or  Britoiis  werfr 
under  his  dconinion.  He  also  rednoed  to  has  suhjeetiKNa 
the  Menavian  islands' ;  tiie  first  of  whidi,  the  one  lyiiig  t» 
the  south,  is  the  largest  in  size,  and,  from  its  fertility,  most 
prodnetive  oi  com.  It  ecoitaiDs  the  faacms  of  960  £uniliea; 
the  other,  ol  ^00  and  more. 

[a.d.  625.]  This  king,  when  yet  a  heathen,  had  marriedi 
Ethelburga,  a  Christian,  and  the  daughter  of  King  Ethel- 
bert,  who  was  also  caUed  Tate,  ^be  was  attended  by 
iWinus,  ordained  bishop  by  Justus  the  arehMshop,  thftfb 

1  Bede,  book  ii.  c.  8.  '  Bede,  bocflt  ii.  eft 

'  Mona,  or  Anglesey,  and  the  Isle  of  Man. 


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A.1).  6^.]  comaBaxoEr  or  szncf  edwin.  87 

he  migbt  pyopagate  the  govpel  in  tiEtat  region.  The  ibUow- 
ing  jeap  l^re  temfei.  a  certain  asBasBin  named  Emner,  ^dio 
was  e]X)|>lo7ed  by  Chiebelm^  kuog  of  Weas^  to  murder 
Edwin.  Tkis  maD,  pret^adiakg  tlMt  he  htou^t  a  message 
lirom  ins  mas^r,  made  a  sodden  attack  on  King  Edwin, 
near  the  nver  B^rwent^  wsth  a  poisimed  and  two-edged 
dagger.  liHa,  an  o£&cer  of  liie  king,  observiag  it,  inter- 
cqoted  ihe  stroke  by  interposing  his  own  body,  which  it 
transfixed,  at  the  same  iime  slighth^  wocmding  the  king. 
The  assassin  was  immediately  cut  down  by  the  swords  of 
the  king's  att^idonts,  bat  not  before  he  had  slain  staotber 
officer. 

The  some  ni^t  the  qneen  garre:  birtih  to  a  dao^ter, 
whose  naxfife  was  Eaofied,  npam  -sUnch  the  king  gm%  thaz^ 
to  his  ^ods ;  but  PSatiliniis  asserted  that  his  prayess  to  Gtid 
had  obtained  for  the  queen  a  safe  deliverance.  The  king,. 
d^Mghted  with  Ms  words,  TOwed  t^iat  he  wottld  become  the 
serv^ant  of  Christ  if  he  granted  him  victory  over  Chkch^m; 
and  as  a  pledge  for  the  folfihEient  of  his  profoise  he  c<hi^ 
manded  that  Ms  daughter  diould  be  baptizie^,  which  ima 
done,  dieren  others^  of  his  femily  receiring  baptism  ait  the 
same  time.  "When,  however,  he  returned  victorious  into  Ms 
ovm  country,  Ms  enemies  bezng  either  slain  or  reduced  to 
subjection,  he  did  not  inememately  beoome  a  Christian; 
btEt,  being  naturally  a  man  of  great  sagacity,  he  often  when 
flkyne,  and  often  m  company  with  others,  having  heard  the 
flB^omexKts  to  the  new  religion,  deliberated  wiwt  was  tor  be 

Pbpe  B<Hu^i0e  addressed  to  Mm  a  letter^  exhorting  hii» 
to  embrace  the  Mth,  and  therewith  he  sent  praients,  which 
he  mentions  at  the  close  of  Ms  epistle  in  these  words: 
•*We  have,  morcc^er,  sent  you  the  blesscog  of  yo«r  pwo- 
teetor,  ^e  blessed  Feter,  Prince  ai  the  iipostiesv  viz.  one 
sMrt,  in&k  sat  ornament  of  go^d,  and  coie  cloak  <^  Ancjra, 
whid!t  -we  piay  your  mightiness  to  accept  wi&  the  wsana 
feeiing  of  regard  vrith  whidi  you  are  assured  it  is  ofiered 
l^  iB9.**  The  Pl^)e  sei^  atiso  a  letter  to  EtheihcErga,^  aceion- 
panied  f^  presents,  of  whidt  he  thus  ^eaks  at  ^e  close  <^ 
his  letter:  ••We  have,  moreover,  sent  yon  Ifce  blessing  of 

^  Bede,  boolt  ii.  ce.  70, 11. 


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88  HENET  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  Ul. 

your  protector,  the  blessed  Peter,  Prince  of  the  Apostles, 
viz.  a  comb  of  gilt  ivoiy  and  a  silver  mirror,  which  we  en- 
treat your  highness  to  accept  with  the  same  feeling  of 
regard  with  which  you  are  assured  it  is  offered  by  us." 

Meanwhile  S  the  Holy  Spirit  revealed  to  Paulinus  a 
vision  which  had  been  formerly  presented  to  King  Edwin 
after  this  manner.  When  Ethelfnd,  his  predecessor,  per- 
secuted him  so  that,  becoming  a  fugitive,  he  had  sought 
refuge  at  the  court  of  King  Kedwald,  he  received  informa- 
tion through  one  of  his  friends  that  Kedwald,  corrupted  by 
the  gifts  of  King  EthelMd,  meant  to  put  him  to  death; 
his  fnend,  at  the  same  time,  offering  to  conduct  him  out  of 
the  province.  To  which  he  replied,  "  Whither  shall  I  now 
flee,  when  I  have  been  so  long  a  wanderer  through  all  the 
provinces  of  Britain,  to  escape  the  snares  of  my  enemies  ? 
But  if  I  must  die,  I  would  rather  fall  by  his  hand  than  by 
that  of  any  meaner  person."  Having  said  this  he  remained 
alone,  brooding  over  his  misfortunes  in  distress  of  mind, 
when  he  suddenly  saw  a  stranger,  in  the  silence  of  the 
night,  who  said  to  him,  "  Fear  not,  for  I  am  not  ignorant 
of  the  cause  of  your  grief.  What,  then,  will  you  give  to 
one  who  will  deliver  you  from  it,  and  influence  Kedwald  to 
restore  his  regard  to  you  ?  "  Upon  his  replying  that  he  would 
give  all  he  was  worth,  the  other  added,  "  What  if  he  should 
also  piously  engage  that  you  should  become  a  more  power- 
ftd  king  than  any  of  your  predecessors,  and  that  all  your 
enemies  shall  be  destroyed?"  Edwin  making  the  same 
reply  as  before,  the  stranger  added  again,  "  But  in  case  he 
should  propose  to  you  a  better  way  of  life  than  any  of  yom: 
fathers  knew,  would  you  submit  to  his  coimsel  ? "  Upon 
Edwin's  faithfully  promising  this,  the  stranger  laid  his 
hand  on  his  head,  saying,  "  When  this  sign  shall  be  given 
you,  remember  this  hour  and  this  discourse."  Having  said 
this  he  suddenly  vanished,  that  the  king  might  imderstand 
it  was  not  a  man,  but  a  spirit.  While  the  royal  youth  sat 
there  alone,  the  friend  before  mentioned  came  to  him  and 
said,  "  Rise  and  be  joyful;  the  king's  resolution  is  altered, 
and  the  queen's  persuasion  has  induced  him  to  keep  faith 
with  you."    In  short,  King  Kedwald  assembled  an  army, 

*  Bede,  book  ii.  c.  12. 


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A.D.  627.]  THE  NOBTHUMBRIANS  CONYEETED.  89 

and  slew  EthelMd,  who  was  advancing  against  him  on 
the  horders  of  the  kingdom  of  Mercia,  on  the  eastern 
bank  of  the  river  which  is  called  Idle.  In  this  battle  the 
son  of  Eedwald,  Eegnhere  by  name,  was  slain.  In  this 
manner  Edwin  obtained  possession  of  the  kingdom  of 
Northumbria. 

[A.D.  627.]  When  PaiiLinus  reminded  the  king  of  the 
vision,  laying  his  hand  on  his  head,  the  king  would  have 
thrown  himself  at  his  feet  if  the  other  had  not  prevented 
him.  The  king  being  now  ready  to  acknowledge  the  faith, 
conferred  with  his  followers,  that  he  might  induce  them  to 
accept  it  with  him^ ;  upon  which  Coifi,  the  chief  of  the 
heathen  priests,  said  :  '*  O  king,  no  one  has  more  devotedly 
served  our  Gods  than  I  have  done,  in  the  hope  of  the 
worldly  advantages  I  might  obtain  through  them.  But 
there  are  many  who  have  received  from  you  richer  gifts 
than  I  have,  and  therefore  I  am  satisfied  that  our  Gods  are 
good  for  nothing."  Another  of  the  king's  chief  men  pre- 
sently added,  "  The  present  life  of  man,  O  king,  on  this 
earth,  seems,  in  comparison  of  that  time  which  is  unknown 
to  us,  as  when  you  are  sitting  at  supper  with  your  warriors 
and  counsellors  in  the  season  of  winter,  the  hall  being 
warmed  by  a  fire  blazing  on  the  hearth  in  the  centre,  the 
storms  of  the  wintry  rains  or  snow  raging  meanwhile  in 
gusts  without;  and  then  a  sparrow  entering  the  house 
should  swiftly  fiit  across  the  hall,  entering  at  one  door,  and 
quickly  disappearing  at  the  other;  for  &e  time  that  it  is 
within  it  is  safe  from  the  wintry  blast,  but  the  narrow 
bounds  of  warmth  and  shelter  are  passed  in  a  little  mo- 
ment, and  then  the  bird  vanishes  out  of  your  sight,  return- 
ing again  into  the  winter's  night  from  which  it  had  just 
emerged.  So  this  life  of  man  appears  for  a  short  interval ; 
but  of  what  went  before,  or  what  is  to  follow,  we  are  utterly 
ignorant.  If,  therefore,  this  new  doctrine  conveys  to  us 
any  more  assured  promise,  it  has  just  claims  that  we  should 
embrace  it." 

When  others  had  also  spoken  to  the  same  effect,  Coifi 
«dded,  that  he  wished  to  hear  Paulinus  himself  discoursing 
of  his  God ;  after  listening  to  whom,  he  exclaimed  that  he 

Bede,  book  iL  c.  18. 


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•0  Hsner  C9  BuimaraK>flr.  [book  la. 

and  iStut  rest  were  lost  in  error,  and  the  j  till  agreed  to  em- 
braee  the  faith  of  Christ  together.  Coifi  himself,  the  chief 
priest,  having  piocured  from  &e  king  a  dkkaiger  whaeh  was 
a  staihon  (for  it  was  not  lawful  for  the  pagan  hi^k-priest  to 
lide  on  aaxy  but  a  mane),  and  sizing  a  sword  and  fspeset 
(which  also  it  was  not  lawful  for  him  to  wield),  gaBoped  to 
the  temple  in  the  sight  oi  all,  and  hnmt  and  destroyed  the 
flhnnes  which  hk  own  hands  had  consecrated.  The  spot 
where  this  idol-temple  stood  is  still  shown  in  iibe  nei^ 
bouzhood  of  York,  to  the  eastward  b^ond  the  river  DcRrii- 
esicion,  that  is,  the  Derwent,  and  the  plaee  is  now  eaifled 
Godmundham^. 

King  Edwin,  theref(^e,  was  baptized  ^  wi^  many  olhers 
at  the  same  time,  in  the  chmrch  of  Si  Feter^,  which  he 
had  constructed  of  timber  for  the  seat  of  the  episcopate  of 
Paulintts.  Before  long  he  began  to  build  diere  a  larger 
church  (d  stone,  whidi  Oswald  afterwards  fiiEished.  There 
were  baptized  also  Ofrid  and  Eadfrkl,  King  Edwin's  sons,. 
both  of  whom  were  bom  to  him  while  he  was  in  esdle,  of 
Quenburga,  the  dau^brter  of  Cearl,  king  of  i^  Mercians.  At 
a  later  period  his  childrrai  by  Queen  Ethelbnrga  were  also 
baptized,  two  of  wb(mt  were  oaatdbed  away  wbUe  they  were 
yet  in  their  white  baptkmal  robes,  and  were  burled  in  Oxe 
church  at  York,  So  great  then  was  the  fiti&  in  the  gosp^, 
and  so  eager  ^be  desire  lor  the  water  of  salvadon  among 
the  people  of  Northumbria,  that  at  one  time  when  Pav^Ems 
came  with  the  king  and  queen  to  the  r^al  viHa  ci^lled 
Adgebrhi*,  he  stayed  with  them  Uiere  S6  days,  ^s^kiofly 
^igaged  in  &e  offices  c^  catechising  tsad  adrmnist^ing 
baptism.  The  people  were  baptized  in  the  river  Oku, 
near  the  town  of  Helming  in  the  proyinee  of  Bemicia.   He 


^  Now  goodmtnlimm,  m  the  But  Biding  of  Tak, 
3  Bede,  lK>dk  iL  c.  U. 

*  At  York,  on  the  site  of  the  present  cathedral,  where  parts  of  the  origi- 
nal &bric  of  Btone,  built  by  Paulinus,  have  been  recently  discoyered  beneatft 
^  preient  choir  ;  sod  Acpeatim  «f  tin  int  timltai  chwk  is  pcnted  out 
by  a  spring,  snppoted  U  he  that  which  si^pliea  tiw  baptistery  of  Ext^X*- 
win.  Paolinns  also  built  a  church  at  Goodmaohom,  where  Stakelef  si^f 
the  font  is  shown  in  which  the  heathen  priest  Coifi  was  baptized. 

*  Teverin  in  Glendall,  near  Wooler. 

*  A  royal  yill;  Miliieldl  in  Kwdiiimbefhuid. 


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A3.  1^8.]  XZNMEV  OONfKBOB.  91 

iMiptiaed  also  in  Hie  river  Swale,  utiich  nms  by  Hie  "vfllage 
of  Calanwt^ 

[J..D.  628^.}  PiatdiniB  also  ccmyrated  tbe  province  of  lio- 
^i8s^^  which  lies  (m  the  soath  of  the  river  Hmabec; 
b^innkig  with  the  governor  of  the  city  of  Linooki,  whoie 
mane  was  Bkcca,  who  was  oonverted  with  aH  his  honse^ 
hold.  He  huHt  in  that  city  a  church  of  beant^il  workmaor 
flldp,  in  which  he  consecn^ted  Honorius  arehhishopu  The 
eHy  of  linooln,  which  was  then  called  Lmdoccftin,  with  the 
net^boiiring  district  of  lindiss^^  whkh  is  sarronnded  on 
aM  ffldes  either  by  rivirars  or  marshes  or  the  sea,  belcmgi  to 
the  kingdom  of  Mercia.  The  city  is  nobly  sitoated,  and 
the  distiiet  abounds  in  wealth;  so  that  it  is  somewhere 
written : 

"  On  a  high  hill  the  noUe  city  stands, 
Fadng  the  sonth.*     ^ 

The  abbot  of  Peartaneu^  reported  that  he  had  seen  an  old 
man  who  was  baptized  by  Panlinus  with  a  crowd  of  peqple» 
in  the  fHresence  of  King  Edwin,  in  the  river  Trent»  near 
the  town  now  called  Fingecester^.  He  described  the  per- 
son of  Paulinns  as  being  tall  of  stature  and  a  little  b^t ; 
his  hair  black,  his  face  meagre,  his  nose  sl^ider  and  aqnir 
line,  his  aspect  both  venerable  and  mi^estic. 

[jLD,  6S4.]  When  Pope  Honorius  was  informed  of  what 
had  occurred,  he  addressed  a  letter  of  esduxrtation  to  King 
Sdwin,  of  which  I  have  thought  it  proper  to  extract  the 
latter  clause,  viz.  that  in  whidi  the  ciinumstances  of  the 
English  archhishops  are  eleady  handled  in  the  following 
words'' : — 

*  C^tteriek^  in  the  Forth  BuKog  of  YoricAire ;  a  jAwe  of  great  an- 
tiquity. 

*  B6d^boakii.&li. 

*  lindiej,  a  district  ceauprinng  the  eaatan  pait  of  Idncolnshin,  bounded 
by  the  Tient  and  the  sea,  the  Humber,  and  the  Wash,  which  in  early  timea 
-was  a  sepaiate  state,  subordinate  to  Lhieoln,  and  dependent  on  the  kings  of 
Xercia. 

*  Hie  BflDieiia0B6da,aiidhft  musthtt  tfntabbtft  cf  Putney,*  edl  U 
^MioBf  Abbey.     Bode  m^  Oat  tbia  aneodote  m»  told  ban  by  Deda 


>  In  Bede,  Tml-fingacaestir.    The  pbce  is  supposed  to  he  Southwell  in 
Nottinghamshire,  remarkable  for  its  ancient  collegiate  church. 
•  Bede,  book  ii  c  17. 


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92  HENBY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  III, 

"  Employ  yourself  in  frequently  reading  the  works  of  my 
Lord  Gregory,  of  apostolical  memory,  who  first  caused  the 
gospel  to  be  preached  among  you,  having  before  your  eyes 
3ie  savour  of  his  doctrine,  which  he  zealously  employed  for 
your  spiritual  good ;  to  the  end  that  his  prayers  may  be- 
nefit your  kingdom  and  people,  and  present  you  blameless 
before  Almighty  God.  But  concerning  those  things  which 
you  have  requested  us  to  regulate  respecting  your  priests, 
being  moved  by  the  sincerity  of  yoin*  faith,  of  which  we 
have  been  satisfactorily  assured  by  a  variety  of  information 
from  the  bearers  of  our  present  letters,  we  are  disposed  to 
make  provision  with  a  willing  mind  and  without  any  delay. 
We  have  therefore  sent  two  palls  to  the  two  metropolitans, 
Honorius  and  Paulinus,  in  order  that,  when  either  of  them 
is  called  out  of  this  world  to  his  Creator,  the  survivor  may, 
pursuant  to  this  our  authority,  substitute  another  bishop  in 
the  place  of  the  one  that  is  deceased.  And  this  privilege 
we  are  induced  to  grant  as  well  on  account  of  your  loving 
regard  to  us,  as  of  the  vast  distance  through  so  many  pro- 
vinces which  intervenes  between  us  and  you ;  that  we  may 
in  all  things  manifest  our  concmrence  with  your  devoted- 
ness  in  conformity  to  your  wishes.  May  God's  grace  keep 
your  Excellency  in  safety  1 " 

[a.d.  627.]  Oiu:  fourth  section^  begins  with  the  conver- 
sion of  the  Eas^ Angles,  whose  king,  Erpwald,  the  son  of 
Bedwald,  accepted  the  faith  at  the  instance  of  Kmg  Edwin, 
with  whom  he  maintained  the  most  fiiendly  relations. 
His  father,  Kedwald,  indeed,  had  long  before  adopted  the 
Christian  rehgion,  but  to  no  piupose ;  for  returning  home 
he  was  seduced  by  his  wife  and  certain  false  bretla:en,  so 
that  he  set  upNaltars  to  Christ  and  to  the  devU  in  the  same 
chapel,  which,  as  Aldulf,  king  of  that  same  province^  who 
lived  in  the  time  of  Venerable  Bede,  testifies,  were  standing 
in  his  time.  Not  long  after  his  conversion,  Erpwald  was 
slain  by  one  Kigbert,  a  pagan.  He  was  succeeded  by  his 
brother  Sigebert,  a  Christian  himself  and  zealous  in  chris- 
tianizing others,  with  the  aid  of  the  bishop  Felix,  who 
being  a  Burgundian  by  origin,  Honorius,  the  archbishop, 
had  sent  there  to  preach  the  gospel.     This  bishop  Felix, 

^  Bede,  book  ii.  c  15. 


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A.D.  634.]  LETTEB  OP  POPE  HONOBTOS.  93 

fixing^  his  episcopal  seat  in  the  city  of  Domoc\  occupied  it 
with  a  felicity  appropriate  to  his  name  for  seventeen  years, 
and  there  ended  his  days  in  peace. 

[a.d.  627-30.]  In  the  meantime,  on  the  death  of  the 
archhishop  Justus,  Paulinus  consecrated  in  his  stead  Ho- 
norius,  who  repaired  to  him  at  the  city  of  Lindocoln,  which 
is  now  called  Lincoln,  and  was  ordained  in  the  church 
which  Paulinus  huilt  there,  as  hefore  related.  Whereupon 
Pope  Honorius  sent  the  pall  to  Honorius  the  new  arch- 
hishop, with  a  letter  concerning  the  ordering  and  the  pre- 
cedence of  the  two  archbishops,  of  which  the  following  is 
the  tenor : — 

"  Honorius  to  his  dearly  beloved  brother  Honorius. 

"Among  the  many  good  ^fts  which  the  mercy  of  our 
Redeemer  is  pleased  to  bestow  upon  his  servants,  the  full- 
ness of  his  loving-kindness  is  largely  shown  as  often  as  He 
permits  us  by  brotherly  intercourse,  as  it  were  face  to  face, 
to  make  known  our  mutual  regard.  For  which  gift  we 
continually  return  thanks  to  his  Divine  Majesty ;  and  we, 
humbly  beseech  Him  that  He  will  confirm  you  with  con- 
tinual strength  while  you  labour,  and  are  fruitful  in  preach- 
ing the  gospel,  and  in  following  the  rule  of  your  master 
and  head,  the  blessed  Gregory,  and  that  He  may,  through 
you,  raise  up  fresh  instruments  for  the  enlargement  of  his 
church :  so  that  the  increase  gained  by  you  and  your  pre- 
decessors, beginning  in  the  time  of  our  lord  Gregory,  being 
in  continual  growth,  may  be  multiplied  and  strengthened 
both  in  faith  and  works  in  the  love  and  fear  of  the  Lord. 
Thus  the  promise  of  our  Lord  shall  hereafter  have  respect 
to  you,  while  those  words  of  his  shall  call  you  to  everlasting 
happiness,  *  Come  unto  me  all  ye  that  labour  and  are 
heavy,  laden,  and  I  will  give  you  rest*  And  again,  *  Well 
done,  thou  good  and  faithful  servant ;  thou  hast  been  faith- 
ful over  a  few  things,  I  will  make  thee  ruler  over  many 
things;  enter  thou  into  the  joy  of  thy  Lord.'    And  we, 

1  Afterwards  Dtmwioh,  but  now  no  longer  in  existence,  it  baring  been 
washed  awaj  by  tbe  sea.  The  name  of  this  bishop  appears  to  be  still  pre- 
ferred by  the  village  of  Felizstow,  **  the  dwelling  of  Felix,  on  the  Suffolk 
coast."— J^Tote  in  Bede*t  EccUs,  Hist.,  Bohn'i  edition. 

*  Bede,  book  ii.  c  18.  He  does  not  mention  the  date  of  this  archbishop's 
death.    The  Saxon  Chronicle  places  it  in  627,  and  Dr.  Smith  in  680. 


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14  HEXBT  OF  HDHXDrOUDOK.  [BOOK  HI. 

most  beloTed  brotiheis,  o£biing  jou  ^ese  words  of  exhor- 
tatkm  oat  of  our  abundant  lore,  do  not  hesitate  to  grant 
you  what  we  perceive  is  possibie  to  c<msist  with  the  pxi- 
Tileges  of  yoor  churches. 

^*  According,  tiierdEtnci,  to  jour  petition,  and  the  neqoests 
of  the  kings  oar  sons,  we  haye  granted  yon  by  these  pre- 
sents, by  autlioiity  as  Ticar  of  the  bkssed  Peter,  Prince  of 
tiie  Apostles,  anth(Mity,  Ihat  when  the  Divine  grace  shall 
call  one  of  you  to  himsdf ,  the  stmriYor  idiall  ordsun  another 
bishop  in  the  place  of  the  deceased.  F<»r  whidi  purpose 
we  have  sent  to  each  of  you  a  pall  for  your  use  in  such 
consecrations,  that  by  the  authority  of  our  precept  you  may 
make  an  ordination  acceptable  to  God.  Consicbring  the 
wide  space  of  sea  and  land  which  lies  between  us  and  you, 
we  find  ourselves  compiled  to  make  this  ccmcession,  in 
<»der  that  no  loss  may  under  any  circumstances  occur  to 
your  churches,  but  that  the  devotion  of  the  people  ccmi- 
mitted  to  your  charge  may  be  fireely  furthered.  Grod  have 
you  in  his  safe  keeping,  most  beloved  brother ! 

"  Given  the  third  day  of  the  Ides  of  June,  in  ihe  reign  of 
our  most  pious  emperors,  ^e  Lords  Heraclins,  that  is, 
in  ^e  24th  year  of  the  reign,  the  23rd  year  a^ber  the  con- 
sulship of  the  Emperor  Heradius^ ;  and  in  the  third  year 
of  the  most  illustrious  Ceesar,  his  son  Heraclius;  the 
seventh  indiction ;  that  is,  in  the  year  of  the  incarnation  of 
our  Lord  684.** 

The  same  Pope  Honorins  wrote  letters  also^  to  the  Scots, 
correcting  their  practice  with  respect  to  keeping  the  feast  of 
Easter,  that  they  mig^t  not,  few  as  they  were,  pretend  to  be 
y/naeac  than  the  churohes  of  Christ  established  throu^iout 
the  worid.  John,  likewise,  who  became  pope  after  the 
death  of  Severinus,  the  successor  of  Honorius,  addressed 
letters  to  them  for  the  purpose  of  correctmg  the  same  error, 
and  combating  ^e  Pelagian  heresy,  whidbi  he  had  been  in- 
formed was  revived  am<Hig  them,  asserting  that  man  could  be 
without  sin,  of  his  own  jfree  will,  independently  of  the  grace 
of  God*.     "  No  man,"  he  said,  "  can  be- without  sin,  except 

^  ThflTO  18  iMBe  confiuiDii  in  Hesry  of  Hvntingdoa's  qustetioa  «£  the 
date  of  this  epistle.  Bade  adds,  ''in  tiM  23id  jear  of  kis  aon  Oonstaalinf, 
and  the  ^iid  after  Us  coBsulsli^'' 

>  Bad«>bM>kit.e.  19. 


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AJD,  6Sd.]  PENDA  PBB8BCUTE8  THE  4SHBISTIANS.  $6 

Jesus  Christ,  who  was  conceited  and  bom  without  sin;" 
lor  all  other  men,  diough  thej  may  he  free  from  actoal 
tzsiisgression,  have  ihe  taint  of  CHiginal  sin,  according  to 
the  saying  of  David :  '  Behc^  I  was  shapea  in  iniquity, 
and  in  sin  did  my  modier  conoeiye  me.' " 

[▲.D.  683.]  After  Edwin  ^  had  reigned  seventeen  years,  he 
was  slain  in  a  dei^erate  batde  in  the  plain  whidi  is  called 
Hethfdd',  hy  Cedwall,  long  o£  the  ij&itons,  supported  hy 
Penda  the  Strong,  at  that  time  king  of  the  Mercians.  In 
this  battle  his  whole  army  was  eiiher  put  to  the  sword  or 
dffipersed.  His  wariike  son,  Osrid,  was  slain  before  him ; 
aziother  son,  Eanfrid,  was  con^Ued  hy  necessity  to  take 
refuge  with  Penda,  by  whom  he  was  afterwards,  during  the 
retgn  of  Oswald,  treacherously  put  to  death.  Beport  says 
that  in  the  battle  just  mentioned,  the  plain  of  Hethfeld 
reeked  throughout  with  red  streams  of  noble  Mood ;  it  was, 
indeed,  the  sc^ie  of  a  sadden  and  d^lorable  slaughter  of 
tiie  bravest  warriors  \  For  Cedwall,  who  was  a  most  power- 
ful king,  was  at  ^e  head  of  an  immense  army ;  and  Penda 
the  Strong  was  truly  i^  strongest.  At  this  time,  therefore, 
tiiere  was  a  general  massacre  of  the  Northumbrian  Chris- 
tiaos;  £Dr  Penda  was  a  pagan,  and  Cedwall  (though  he 
professed  himself  a  Christian)  was  worse  than  a  pagans 
paring  neither  women  nor  (^dren,  and  threatening  to 
exterminate  all  the  En^sh  who  were  in  Britain.  Nor  was 
it  the  custom  of  the  Britons  to  communicate  with  the 
fiO^i^  any  more  than  with  the  pagans,  paying  no  respect 
to  tibeir  profession  of  Christianity. 

King  Edwin^s  head  was  carried  to  York,  and  deposited  in 
ihe  dmrdi  of  St  Peter,  which  he  had  began  to  ^ect,  and 
Oswald  finished.  And  now  the  N<Mlhumbrians,  finding  no 
aalety  but  in  flight,  Pauhnus,  taking  with  him  the  queen 
Ethdburga,  whom  he  had  formeriy  conducted  ttuth^, 
returned  into  Kait  by  sea,  where  he  was  honourably  re- 
ceived by  the  Ardibishop  Honorius  and  King  Eadbald.  He 
broo^t  with  him  also  the  son  and  dau^ter  oi  Edwin, 
idiom  their  mother  afterwards,  for  fear  of  the  kings  Ead- 
bald  and  Oswald,  sent  into  France  to«be  bred  up  hy  King 

'  Bede,  book  il  c.  20. 
^  Heathfield,  now  Hatfield,  near  Doneturter. 
^ '  This  passage  is  an  addition  hy  Hemy  of  Huntingdon  to  the  more 
^ple  narratiye  of  Bede 


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96  HENBT  OF  HUNTTNGDON.  [BOOK  m. 

Dagobert,  who  was  her  friend ;  and  there  they  both  died 
young.  He  brought  with  him  also  the  precious  vessels  of 
Edwin,  with  a  cross  of  gold  and  a  golden  chalice,  which  are 
still  preserved  in  the  cathedral  at  Canterbury. 

Komanus,  bishop  of  Kochester,  having  been  drowned  in 
the  Italian  sea  while  he  was  on  his  way  to  Kome  on  a  mission 
from  Honorius,  Paulinus  took  chaurge  of  that  bishopric, 
which  he  held  for  the  rest  .of  his  life,  and,  there  dying,  left 
the  pall,  which  he  had  received  from  the  pope.  He  had 
left  behind  him  in  his  chiurch  at  York,  James  the  Deacon, 
a  holy  man,  who,  from  that  time,  employed  himself  in 
baptizing  and  teaching,  imtil  peace  being  restored  in  the 
province,  and  the  number  of  the  faithful  increasing,  he 
became  precentor  or  master  of  church  song  after  the  Eoman 
custom  ^  And  being  old,  and  full  of  days;  as  uxe  Scripture 
says,  he  went  the  way  of  his  fathers^. 

Edwin  was  succeeded  in  the  kingdom  of  the  Deiri  by  his 
cousin  Osric ;  while  Eanfrid,  the  son  of  Ethelfrid,  obtained 
the  kingdom  of  the  Bemicii.  These  were  the  two  provinces 
into  which  the  Northumbrian  nation  was  anciently  divided. 
The  two  young  princes  had  been  baptized  while  they  were 
in  exile  among  the  Scots  and  Picts  in  the  time  Of  King 
Edwin;  but  when  they  became  kings  they  relapsed  to 
heathenism.  They  were  justly,  but  treacherously,  slain  by 
King  Cedwall.  First,  the  very  next  summer,  he  slew 
Osric ;  for,  being  besieged  by  him  in  a  free  town  ^,  Cedwall 
made  a  sudden  sally,  and,  taking  him  by  surprise,  destroyed 
him  and  his  whole  army.  The  year  afterwards  he  put  to 
death  Eanfrid,  who  came  to  him  with  only  twelve  soldiers  to 
sue  for  peace.  It  was  a  disastrous  year,  both  on  account  of 
the  apostacy  of  the  English  kings,  and  the  tyranny  of 
Cedwall,  who  ravaged,  as  with  a  pestilence,  the  hmds  which 
he  had  ingloriously  acquired.  Hence  that  year  is  passed 
over  and  added  to  the  reign  of  his  successor  Oswald.  This 
king,  after  the  murder  of  his  brother  Eanfrid,  advanced  with 
a  small  army,  before  which  he  carried  aloft  the  standard  of 
the  holy  cross.  Having  planted  it  in  a  hole  dug  in  the 
ground,  and  secured  it  witii  tiurfs,  he  said,  "  Let  us  kneel 

'  What  is  now  called  the  Gregorian  channt. 

'  Bede^  book  iii.  c.  1. 

'  "  Municipiens,  probably  Toric 


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A.D.  635.]         AIDAN   PREACHES  IN   NOBTHXJMBRIA.  97 

down,  and  let  us  pray  together,  that  the  living  and  true 
Almighty  God  may  of  his  mercy  save  us  jfrom  our  cruel  and 
proud  enemy;  for  He  knows  that  we  are  engaged  in  a 
righteous  war  for  the  safety  of  our  country."  After  which, 
at  break  of  day,  they  gave  battle  to  Ceadwall  and  his  army, 
vaunting  that  no  one  was  able  to  resist  them.  But  they 
were  defeated  and  slain  at  Denises-bum*,  that  is,  Denis 's- 
brook,  so  that  it  is  said,  "  The  corpses  of  Oeadwall's  soldiers 
filled  the  channel  of  the  Denis."  The  place  is  held  in 
great  veneration,  as  shall  be  related  in  the  "Book  of 
Miracles."^ 

Oswald,  becoming  king,  for  the  furtherauce  of  the  faith, 
sent  into  Scotland,  where  he  had  been  exiled,  and  obtained 
the  assistance  of  Aidan,  an  excellent  man,  though  he  kept 
Easter  inco^ectiy  according  to  the  usage  of  the  northern 
Scots.  However,  the  Scots,  who  dwelt  in  the  south  of 
Ireland,  had  long  since,  by  the  admonition  of  the  pope, 
observed  Easter  correctly.  On  the  arrival  of  the  bishop, 
lie  king  fixed  his  episcopal  seat  in  the  island  of  Lindisfame. 
The  faith  now  began  to  spread;  and  it  was  a  beautiful 
spectacle,  when  Aidan  was  preaching  in  the  English  tongue, 
^hich  he  spoke  imperfectly,  to  see  the  king  himself  inter- 
preting, as  he  often  did,  to  his  ofl&cers  and  counsellors. 
Eor,  during  his  long  exile,  he  had  perfectly  learnt  the 
language  of  the  Scots.  Thus  the  faith  grew,  and  some 
monks,  coming  firom  Scotland,  zealously  taught  the  people ; 
for  the  bishop  himself  was  a  monk  of  tie  island  called  Hii, 
where  there  is  a  monastery  which  was  for  a  long  time  the 
chief  of  all  that  were  among  the  northern  Scots  and  the 
Picts.  This  island  properly  belongs  to  Britain,  being  di- 
vided fi'om  it  only  by  a  narrow  strait;  but  it  had  been 
granted  by  the  Picts,  who  inhabit  those  parts  of  Britain,  to 
Qie  Scottish  monks,  because  they  had  received  firom  them 
the  fiMth  of  Christ^ 

For  in  the  year  of  grace  565,  when  Justin  the  younger* 

I  The  place  has  not  been  identified. 

^  Henry  of  Huntingdon  added  a  Nintli  Book  to  his  History,  containing 
an  account  of  the  miracles  related  by  Bede,  and  also  of  some  modem  saints 
who  flourished  in  Britain  after  the  time  of  JBede. 

'  Bede,  book  iii.  c.  3.  Henry  of  Huntingdon  here,  following  Bede,  breaks 
the  thread  of  his  narrative  to  introduce  an  account  of  the  conyersion  of  the 
Picts  by  Columba,  one  of  whose  followers^  the  fourth  abbot,  was  Aidan,  the 

n 


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98  HENBT  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  III 

who  succeeded  Justinian,  was  emperor,  there  came  oyer 
from  Ireland  an  abbot  who  was  named  Columba,  to  preach 
to  the  Picts  of  the  north,  those  I  mean  who  are  separated 
from  the  southern  Picts  by  ridges  of  lofty  and  rugged 
mountains.  For  the  southern  Picts  had  been  already  con- 
Terted  by  Ninian,  a  British  bishop,  who  was  instructed  at 
Rome,  whose  episcopal  see,  named  after  St  Martin,  where 
Columba  himself  was  buried,  is  now  possessed  by  the 
English.  The  place  lies  in  the  province  of  Bemicia,  and 
is  commonly  caUed  "  The  White-house,"^  because  he  there 
erected  a  church  of  stone,  which  was  not  the  usual  practice 
of  the  Britons. 

Columba  arrived  in  Britain  in  the  twenty-first  year  of  the 
reign  of  Bride,  the  son  of  MeilochoUj  a  very  powerful  king 
of  the  Picts;  and  having  converted  the  people,  received 
fix)m  them  the  aforesaid  island,  which  contains  about  five 
fiamilies,  according  to  the  English  mode  of  reckoning. 
His  successors  possess  it  to  this  day;  and  there  Columbr* 
himself  was  buried.  There  was  also  another  noble  monads 
tery  in  Ireland,  which  is  called  De-Armach,  or  the  Field  ct 
Oaks.  From  these  two  monasteries,  many  others,  both  iiJ 
Ireland  and  Britain,  were  offsets,  that  of  Hii  having  th£ 
rule  over  them  all.  For  to  the  abbot  of  that  island,  the 
whole  province  and  even  the  bishops,  contrary  to  the  usual 
order,  are  wont  to  be  subject,  because  the  missionary 
Columba  was  not  a  bishop,  but  a  priest  and  a  monk.  His 
successors,  imitating  his  example,  became  very  celebrated, 
though  they  were  in  error  respecting  the  observance  of 
Easter,  till  they  were  set  right  by  Egbert  the  English  king. 

[a.d.  635.]  From  this  monastery,  Aidan  came^  and  was 
appointed  bishop  of  Northimibria.  King  Oswald,  having 
his  mind  formed  by  such  a  man,  was  more  proficient  in 
knowledge,  and  more  prosperous  in  his  affiEdrs,  than  all  his 
progenitors.  For  he  brought  imder  his  dominion  all  the 
nations  who  inhabited  Britain,  viz.  the  Britons,  the  English, 
the  Picts,  and  the  Scots.  But  though  he  was  so  exalted,  he 
continued  humble,  and  was  liberal  and  kind  to  the  stranger 
and  the  poor. 

apostle  of  the  Northumbrians,  whose  eonyenion  Henry  of  Huntingdon  then 
proceeds  to  notice. 

'  Whitheme,  or  Candida  Casa,  in  Galloway.  '  Bede,  book  UL  c  5. 


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A.D.  636.]  CONVEBSION   OP  THE  WEST-SAXONS.  99 

Here  follows  our  fifth  section^,  which  treats  of  the  con- 
version of  the  West-Saxons,  who  were  formerly  called  Ge- 
wisssB.  It  was  accomplished  hy  Birinus,  a  bishop,  who 
came  into  Britain  by  the  advice  of  Pope  Honorius ;  for 
which  pmpose  he  was  ordained  bishop  by  Asterius,  bishop 
of  Genoa.  Having  arrived  among  the  Gewissse,  a  nation 
plimged  in  the  darkest  heathenism,  he  brought  to  baptism 
the  people  and  their  king  Kinigils  [a.d.  635].  It  happened 
fortunately  that  the  holy  king  Oswald  was  visiting  Kinigils, 
whom  he  held  in  the  laver  of  baptism,  and  took  his 
daughter  in  marriage.  The  two  kings  gave  to  Birinus  the 
city  of  Dorcie^  for  the  seat  of  his  episcopacy,  where,  having 
built  churches,  he  was  buried ;  but  many  years  afterwards, 
when  Hedda  was  bishop,  his  remains  were  translated  thence 
to  thie  city  of  Went,  which  is  now  called  Winchester,  and 
were  laid  in  the  church  of  St.  Peter  and  Paul. 

Kinigils  also  departing  this  life  was  succeeded  by  his 
son  Kenwalch,  who  held  the  truth,  but  imperfectly;  for 
having  divorced  his  wife,  who  was  sister  of  Penda  king  of 
Mercia,  and  married  another,  he  was  conquered  and  driven 
out  of  his  kingdom  by  Penda,  and  became  for  three  years 
an  exile  in  the  court  of  Anna,  the  Christian  king  of  the  East- 
Angles,  where  Kenwalch  was  restored  to  the  faith.  But  when 
he  had  recovered  his  kingdom,  he  chose  for  bishop  a 
Frenchman  named  Agilbert,  who  then  came  from  Ireland, 
v^here  he  had  resided  for  the  sake  of  study.  Afterwards 
the  king,  who  knew  no  language  but  English,  growing 
weary  of  the  bishop's  barbarous  tongue,  brought  into  the 
province  another  bishop  of  his  own  nation,  whose  name 
was  Wine,  who  had  been  ordained  in  France,  and,  dividing 
his  kingdom  into  two  dioceses,  gave  one  to  Wini,  with 
Went,  or  Winchester,  for  his  episcopal  seat.  Upon  this 
Agilbert,  being  offended  that  the  king  had  so  done  without 
consulting  him,  returned  into  France,  and,  accepting  the 
bishopric  of  Paris,  held  it  till  his  death.  Afterwards,  the 
same  king  drove  Wini  from  his  bishopric,  who,  taking 
refiige  withWulfhere,  king  of  the  Mercians,  pm-chased  from 
him  for  money  the  see  of  London,  and  continued  in  that 

1  Bede,  book  iii.  c.  7. 

*  Dorchester,  near  Oxford.  The  see  was  afterwards  transferred  t© 
Lincoln. 

H  » 


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100  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  in. 

bishopric  till  his  death.  The  province  being  thus  without 
a  bishop,  and  the  king  undergoing  much  suffering  from  his 
enemies,  and  many  hindrances  on  that  accoimt,  he  sent 
to  Paris  for  Agilbert.  But  he  being  unwilling  to  relinquish 
that  bishopric,  sent  to  the  king  his  nephew  Eleutherius, 
who  having  been  consecrated  by  Theodore  the  archbishop, 
for  a  long  period  had  the  sole  government  of  the  entire 
diocese  of  the  Gewissse. 

[a.d.  640.]  Meanwhile^,  after  Eadbald,  king  of  Kent, 
Erconbert  his  son  reigned  in  honour  24  years.  He  was 
the  first  of  the  English  kings  who  utterly  destroyed  idols 
throughout  his  dominions.  He  also  commanded  the  fast 
of  the  40  days  of  Lent  to  be  kept,  and  enacted  penalties 
on  those  who  broke  it.  He  married  Sexberga,  the  eldest 
daughter  of  King  Anna,  who  had  sent  his  youngest  daugh- 
ter Ethelberga,  and  his  wife's  daughter  Sethred,  to  be  ser- 
vants of  the  Lord  in  the  monastery  of  Brie*,  both  of  whom, 
though  foreigners,  were  for  their  vu'tues  elected  abbesses  of 
Brie.  For  at  that  time  the  English  nobles  were  accustomed 
to  send  their  daughters  to  be  brought  up  in  the  convents  of 
Brie,  of  Challes^,  and  Andelys.  Erconbert  also  sent  to  Brie 
his  daughter  Erchengote,  a  holy  and  venerable  virgin,  whose 
virtuous  acts,  and  the  wonders  of  whose  miracles,  are  to  this 
day  related  by  the  inhabitants  of  that  place.  We  shall  set 
forth  her  merits  in  the  "  Book  of  Miracles."* 

[a.d.  642.]  About  the  same  time  Oswald  "^j  after  a  reign  of 
nine  years,  including  the  year  which  has  been  before  re- 
ferred to^,  was  slain  by  Penda  the  Strong,  in  a  great  battle 
at  Mesafeld,  on  the  5th  of  August,  in  the  thirty-eighth  year 
of  his  age.     Wlience  it  is  said,  "  The  plain  of  Mesafeld^ 

'  Bede,  book  iii.  c.  8. 

^  Or  Faremontier,  a  monastery  founded  hj  St  Fara,  A.D.  616,  according 
to  the  rule  of  St.  Golumba. 

'  Ohelles,  four  leagues  from  Paris.  It  was  founded  by  St.  Clotilda. 
Bede  says  that  the  noble  English  ladies  were  sent  to  these  convents  to  be 
educated,  from  there  being  few  vuch  in  England. 

*  See  note,  p.  97. 

'  Bede,  book  iii.  c  9. 

*  See  before,  p.  96,  for  the  reason  this  year  was  erased  from  the  calen- 
dar of  the  Christian  kings,  as  Bede  expresses  it. 

^  Antiquarians  differ  about  the  site  of  Mesafeld,  or  Maserfield,  as  Bede 
names  it ;  Camden  placing  it  at  Oswestry,  in  Shropshire ;  and  others  at 
Winwick,  in  Lancashire. 


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A.D.  642.]  MUBDEB   OF  08WIN.  101 

was  whitened  with  the  bones  of  saints."  By  an  inscrutable 
providence,  the  foes  of  God  were  allowed  to  massacre  his 
people,  and  give  them  for  food  to  the  fowls  of  the  air.  On 
the  spot  where  Oswald  was  slain,  miracles  are  wrought  to 
the  present  day. 

[a.d.  642.]  This  holy  king  was  succeeded  in  the  province 
of  Bemicia  by  his  brother  Oswy^,  who  reigned  28  years ; 
but  Oswin,  the  son  of  King  Osric  already  named,  reigned 
seven  years  in  the  province  of  Deira.  Between  Ihese  two 
kings  tiiere  were  causes  of  disagreement,  which  became  so 
aggravated  that  they  were  on  the  point  of  encoimtering 
each  other  at  Wilfares-dune,  that  is,  **  Wilfar's  hill,"  distant 
almost  ten  miles  from  the  village  called  Cataract^,  about 
the  autumnal  solstice.  Oswin,  however,  finding  himself 
inferior  in  force,  dismissed  his  army,  and,  attended  only  by 
a  single  soldier,  whose  name  was  Tondhere,  sought  conceal- 
ment in  the  house  of  Earl  Himwald^  whom  he  imagined  to 
be  his  sin:est  friend ;  but  he  was  betrayed  by  the  Earl  to 
Oswald,  and  was  put  to  death,  with  the  trusty  follower,  by 
an  officer  of  Oswy's  named  Ethelwin,  a  minrder  universally 
execrated,  at  a  place  called  Getlingum^,  where  afterwards 
a  church  was  bmlt,  for  the  sake  both  of  him  that  was  mur- 
dered and  of  him  by  whose  command  he  was  slain.  King 
Oswin  was  of  a  graceful  aspect,  and  tall  of  stature,  affable 
in  discoiu^e,  coinrteous  and  liberal,  and  so  beloved  that  his 
court  was  frequented  by  the  nobles  of  both  the  provinces 
[of  Northumbria].  Of  his  hmnility  we  propose  to  give 
memorable  instances  from  the  acts  of  St.  Aidan,  who  was 
much  beloved  by  him. 

[a.d.  644.]  In  the  second  year  of  the  reign  of  Oswy*, 
Ithamar  succeeded  the  most  reverend  Father  Paulinus  in 
the  see  of  Kochester.  At  this  time*  the  kingdom  of  the 
East-Angles,  after  the  death  of  Earpwald,  the  successor  of 
Bedwald,  was  governed  by  his  brother  Sigebert,  a  religious 

1  Bede,  book  iii.  c.  14. 

^  Catterick,  in  the  West  Biding,  mentioned  before.  The  spot  called  Wil- 
£Eir*s  Hill  cannot  now  be  pointed  out 

»  Gilling,  in  the  North  Biding  of  Yorkshire.  Bede  calls  it  Ingeth- 
lingham. 

♦  Bede,  book  iii.  cc.  14.  18,  19,  20. 

•  Sigebert  became  king  of  Kent  a.d.  685,  long  before  the  death  of  Pau- 
linos.    Henry  of  Huntingdon  is  frequently  confused  in  his  chronology. 


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lOa  HENBT  OF  HUNTINQDON.  [bOOK  m. 

man,  who  had  heen  haptized  Id  France,  where  he  had  fled 
from  the  persecution  of  Redwald.  After  he  became  king 
he  established  a  school  for  youths,  such  as  he  had  observed 
in  France ;  in  which  he  was  assisted  by  Bishop  Felix.  A 
holy  man  from  Ireland,  named  Fiursey,  was  also  nobly  en- 
tertained by  him.  This  king  was  so  deyoted  to  God  that, 
resigning  his  crown  to  his  cousin  Ecgric,  he  entered  a  mo- 
nastery and  received  the  tonsure.  Many  years  afterwards 
he  was  compelled  to  quit  it,  that  he  might  take  the  field 
against  King  Penda;  but  he  would  not  consent  to  bear 
anything  but  a  staff  in  his  hand  during  the  battle ;  where- 
upon he  was  slain,  together  with  King  Ecgric,  and  most  of 
his  army.  Anna,  the  son  of  Bni,  of  tibe  royal  race,  a  good 
man  and  the  father  of  a  worthy  offspring,  succeeded.  He 
also  was  afterwards  slain  by  Penda.  Felix,  bishop  of  the 
East-Angles,  was  succeeded  by  Thomas,  after  whom  was 
Boniface.  They  were  all  consecrated  by  Honorius,  on 
whose  death  Deus-dedit  became  the  sixth  archbishop  d 
Canterbmy  [a.d.  655].  He  was  consecrated  by  Ithamar, 
bishop  of  Kochester,  who  was  succeeded  in  that  see  by 
Damianus. 

[a.d.  653.]  The  sixth  part,  which  follows,  relates  the 
conversion  of  the  Middle-Aiigles^,  that  is,  the  Angles  of  the 
midland  district,  under  their  prince  Peada,  who  governed 
that  people  for  his  father  Penda.  King  Oswy  had  given 
his  daughter  in  marriage  to  Peada,  on  condition  that  he 
would  become  a  Christian ;  but  he  was  mainly  influenced 
to  this  by  the  persuasion  of  Alfrid,  a  son  of  Oswy's,  who 
had  married  his  sister,  the  daughter  of  Penda.  Ac/Cordingly 
Peada  was  baptized,  vdth  his  family,  by  Bishop  Finan,  at  a 
village  which  is  called  At-the-Wall ;  and  having  secured  the 
help  of  four  priests,  Cedda  and  Adda,  Betti  and  Duma,  he 
returned  with  them  to  his  own  coimtry.  Nor  did  King 
Penda  oppose  the  conversion  of  those  of  his  own  nation, 
that  is,  the  Mercians  who  were  so  disposed,  but  he  treated 
with  contempt  believers  who  were  ill-livers.  Two  years 
afterwards  the  general  conversion  of  the  people  of  Mercia 
took  place  in  this  way :  King  Oswy,  being  unable  to  bear 
the  intolerable  inroads  of  King  Penda,  offered  him  an  enor- 
mous tribute;  but  Penda  the  Strong,  having  resolved  on 
'  Bede,  book  iii.  c.  21. 


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A.D.  655.]  THE  TTEiLNT  PENDA  BLAIN.  103 

exterminating  the  people  of  Oswy,  rejected  the  offering. 
Upon  this  Oswy,  driven  to  despair,  exclaimed,  "If  this 
heisLthen  refiises  to  accept  our  gifts,  let  us  offer  them  to  him 
that  will,  even  God."*  Thereupon  he  made  a  vow  that  he 
would  dedicate  his  daughter  to  the  Lord,  and  would  give 
twelve  fiarms  to  the  monasteries.  Then  with  a  few  troops 
he  attacked  a  multitude;  indeed  it  is  reported  that  ihe  army 
of  the  heathens  was  thrice  as  great  as  his,  as  they  had  30 
legions  in  battle  array  under  renowned  generals.  Against 
these  Oswy  and  his  son  Alfiid  mustered  but  a  very  small 
force,  but,  trusting  in  Christ  as  their  leader,  they  joined 
battle  with  the  pagans.  Oswy's  other  son,  Egfrid,  was  at 
that  time  .detained  as  a  hostage  among  the  Mercians,  by 
the  Queen  Cynwise;  and  Ethelwald,  King  Oswald's  son, 
who  ought  to  have  come  to  their  aid,  was  on  the  side  of 
their  enemies,  and  was  one  of  their  leaders  against  his 
country  and  his  uncle.  However,  during  the  battle  he 
withdrew  from  the  fight,  and  waited  the  issue  in  a  place  of 
safety.  In  this  engagement  the  pagans  were  defeated,  and 
all  the  30  commanders  were  slain ;  for  the  God  of  battles 
was  with  his  faithful  people,  and  broke  the  might  of  King 
Penda,  and  unnerved  the  boasted  strength  of  his  arm,  and 
caused  his  proud  heart  to  fail,  so  that  his  assaults  were  not 
as  they  were  wont  to  be,  and  the  arms  of  his  enemies  pre- 
vailed against  them.  He  was  struck  with  amazement  at 
finding  that  his  foes  were  now  become  to  him  what  he  had 
formerly  been  to  them,  and  that  he  was  to  them  what  they 
had  been  to  him.  He  who  had  shed  the  blood  of  others 
now  suffered  what  he  had  inflicted  on  them,  while  the  earth 
was  watered  with  his  blood,  and  the  ground  was  sprinkled 
with  his  brains.  Almost  all  his  allies  were  slain,  amongst 
whom  was  Ethelhere,  brother  and  successor  of  Anna,  kmg 
of  the  East- Angles,  the  promoter  of  the  war,  who  fell  with 
the  auxiliary  troops  he  led.  The  battle  was  fought  near 
the  river  Winwed^  the  waters  of  which,  from  excessive 
rains,  were  not  only  deep,  but  overflowed  its  banks,  so  that 
many  more  were  drowned  in  the  flight  than  fell  by  the 
sword. 
In  consequence,  Ethelfreda,  King  Oswy's  daughter,  be- 

*  Bede^  book  ill  c.  24.  ^  The  Aire,  near  Leeds. 


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104  HENRY   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  in. 

came  a  nun  in  the  convent  of  Herteu,  that  is,  "  the  Isle  c^ 
the  Hart."^  Afterwards  she  founded  a  monastery  in 
Streaneshalch  ^,  of  which  she  hecame  the  ahhess,  and  ^ere 
died.  In  it  were  interred  her  father  Oswy,  with  her  mother 
Eanfleda,  and  her  mother's  father,  Edwin.  King  Oswy  go- 
verned the  people  of  Mercia  and  the  other  southern  pro- 
vinces for  three  years  after  the  death  of  Penda,  and  also 
reduced  to  submission  great  part  of  the  nation  of  the  Picts. 
He  conferred  on  his  kinsman  Peada,  the  son  of  Penda,  the 
government  of  the  southern  Mercians,  containing  5000 
ftimihes,  divided  by  the  river  Trent  from  the  northern 
Mercians,  who  amounted  to  7000  families.  Peada,  however, 
was  soon  after  murdered,  through  the  treachery  of  his  vdfe. 
The  Mercian  tribes  were  for  three  years  subject  to  King 
Oswy,  who  freed  them  from  their  impious  tyrant,  and  con- 
verted them  to  the  Christian  faith.  Diuma  became  the 
first  bishop  of  the  Middle-Angles,  as  well  as  of  Lindisfame 
and  the  Mercians.  He  died  and  was  buried  in  Mercia, 
and  was  succeeded  by  Ceollach,  who,  however,  retired  to 
the  Scots  from  whom  he  came.  But  after  the  three  years 
befo'^e  mentioned,  the  chiefs  of  the  Mercians  rebelled  against 
King  Oswy,  setting  up  Wulfhere,  the  son  of  Penda,  for 
king.  He  reigned  seventeen  years,  during  which  Trumhere 
was  the  first  bishop,  Jaruman  the  second,  Chad  the  third, 
and  Wilfrid  the  fourth. 

[a.d.  653.1  At  that  time  also  the  East-Saxons^,  who  had 
formerly  expelled  Mellitus,  returned  to  the  faith.  For 
Sigebert,  who  reigned  next  to  Sigebert,  smuamed  the 
Little,  was  then  king  of  that  nation,  and  an  ally  of  King 
Oswy.  He  often  visited  him,  and  being  instructed  by  him, 
was  baptized  by  Bishop  Finan,  in  the  royal  village  called 
At-the-Wall,  which  is  distant  twelve  miles  from  the  eastern 
sea.  Cedd,  invited  from  Middle-Anglia,  became  the 
bishop  in  Essex,  and  baptized  multitudes  in  the  town  of 
Itancester  *,  which  is  on  tiie  bank  of  the  river  Pente,  and  in 
Tilaburgh  ^,  which  lies  on  the  bank  of  the  Thames.    There 

*  Now  Hartlepool. 

*  '♦  The  bay  of  the  Llghihonse  "—Bede,  Now  Whitby,  in  the  Nortk 
Biding  of  Yorkshire. 

3  Bede,  book  iii.  c.  22. 

*  Near  Maldon,  in  Essex  :  the  river  Pente  is  now  called  the  Blackwater. 
^  Tilbury,  in  E^ssez,  opposite  Gbaveseud. 


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A.D.  652.]  CHURCH  BUILT  AT  LINDI8FARNE.  106 

was  a  certain  nobleman  with  whom  communion  was  for- 
bidden, because  he  had  contracted  an  unlawful  marriage. 
The  king,  however,  slighting  the  prohibition,  partook  of  an 
entertainment  at  his  house.  On  his  return  he  met  the 
bishop,  and  threw  himself  at  his  feet.  The  bishop  in- 
censed, touched  the  king,  thus  humbled  before  him,  with 
his  rod,  and  foretold  his  death  in  the  same  house  in 
which  he  had  offended.  It  happened  soon  afterwards  that 
the  nobleman  and  his  brother  assassinated  the  king  in 
that  house,  saying  they  did  it  because  he  was  too  gentle 
and  forgiving  to  his  enemies. 

Sigebert  was  succeeded  by  Suidhelm,  who  was  baptized 
by  Cedd  himself  in  East-Anglia,  at  Kendlesham,  that  is, 
Kendle's-House ;  and  Ethelwald,  king  of  that  nation,  and 
brother  of  Anna,  king  of  the  same  people,  was  his  god- 
father. Ethelwald,  king  of  the  Deiri,  and  son  of  Oswald, 
granted  to  this  same  Cedd  an  estate  at  Lestingau',  for 
building  a  monastery.  After  its  erection  he  often  retired 
there  from  his  bishopric  in  Essex,  and  happening  to  do  so 
in  the  time  of  a  mortality,  he  there  died. 

[a.d.  652.]  In  the  meantime  Finan  the  bishop  erected 
a  church  of  hewn  timber  in  the  Isle  of  Lindisfame^.  It 
was  afterwards  consecrated  by  the  Archbishop  Theodore, 
and  Eadbert,  bishop  there,  covered  the  walls  and  roof 
with  lead.  When  Einan  died,  he  was  succeeded  by  Col- 
man,  who  kept  Easter  irregularly,  as  Aidan  and  Finan  had 
done.  Whereupon  a  conference  was  held  in  the  presence 
of  King  Oswy  and  King  Alfrid  his  son.  On  one  side  were 
Colman  and  Cedd  before  named ;  on  the  other  was  Agil- 
bert,  bishop  of  the  West-Saxons,  who  had  come  to  his 
friend  Eang  Alfrid,  with  James,  a  deacon  of  Paulinus.  Of 
whom  the  right  part  prevailed.  Cedd  afterwards  observed  the 
Feast  of  Easter  properly;  while  Colman,  beiug  unwilling  to 
change  the  usage  of  Father  Aidan,  returned  to  his  own 
country,  carrying  part  of  his  relics  with  him.  Tuda  suc- 
ceeded him  in  Sie  see  of  Northumbria ;  but  Eata  was  ap- 
pointed, first  abbot,  and  then  bishop,  of  Lindisfame. 
The  three  Scottish  bishops — ^Aidan,  Finan,  and  Colman — 
were  extraordinary  patterns  of  sanctity  and  fingaUty.  They 

*  Lastingham;  in  Yorkshire.  ^  Bede,  book  iii.  co.  25,  26. 


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106  HENBY  OF  HUNTINGDOK.  [bOOK  lU. 

never  entertained  the  gi-eat  men  of  the  world,  for  such 
never  visited  them  except  to  pray.  The  king  himself,  when 
he  came  to  prayer,  had  only  £ve  or  six  attendants,  and 
either  at  once  departed,  or  partook  of  the  repast  of  the 
brethren.  So  free  from  avarice  were  the  priests  of  that 
age,  that  they  refused  to  accept  grants  of  land,  unless  they 
were  forced  upon  them. 

[a.d.  664.]  Not  long  afterwards  there  was  an  eclipse  of 
the  sun,  on  the  3rd  of  May,  about  the  tenth  hour  of  the 
day^  It  was  followed  by  a  grievous  pestilence,  which  de- 
populated Britain  and  Ireland  with  its  ravages.  Bishop 
Tuda  died  of  this  pestilence,  and  was  buried  at  Wemalet^ 

In  the  meantime  ^  Alfrid,  the  son  of  Oswy,  who  already 
governed  part  of  his  fiather's  dominions,  sent  Wilfrid  the 
priest  to  the  king  of  the  Franks^  to  be  consecrated  bishop. 
Accordingly,  he  was  solemnly  ordained  by  Agilbert  already 
mentioned,  who  presided  over  the  see  of  Paris,  assisted  by 
many  other  bishops,  at  the  royal  villa  of  Compeigne.  King 
Oswy  also,  imitating  the  prudent  policy  of  his  son,  when 
the  Archbishop  of  York  died,  sent  the  priest  Ceadda  [Chad] 
to  Wini,  bishop  of  the  East-Saxons,  by  whom  he  was 
ordained  bishop  of  the  church  of  York.  Chad  being  con- 
secrated bishop,  set  himself  to  follow  the  rule  of  his  master 
Aidan,  and  the  eiMmple  of  his  brother  Cedd,  travelling  not 
on  horseback,  but  on  foot,  devoted  to  learning,  studying 
the  truth,  continent  and  humble.  Wilfrid  also  returning 
into  Britain  after  his  consecration,  added  many  things  to 
the  teaching  of  the  English  chiurch. 

[a.d.  665.]  Sighere  and  Sebbi  succeeded  King  Suidhelm 
in  Essex*,  but  Sighere  and  his  people  relapsed  to  idolatry  in 
consequence  of  the  mortality  which  has  been  already  men- 
tioned. Whereupon  King  Wulfhere  sent  to  them  Bishop  Jaru- 
man,  who  happily  succeeded  in  recovering  them  to  the  feuth* 
At  that  time  Pope  Vitalian  addressed  letters  to  Oswy  and 

*  Bede,  book  iil  c.  27. 

^  Bede  calls  this  place  Pegnaleih ;  t^e  Saxon  Ohnmicle,  Wagele.  It  wis 
probably  Finchale,  in  the  parish  of  St.  Oswalds,  on  the  western  bank  of  the 
Wear,  near  Durham. 

®  Bede,  book  iii.  c.  28.  *  Clotaire,  king  of  Neustria. 

*  Bede,  book  iii,  c.  30 ;  and  book  iv.  c.  1. 

*  Sighere  and  Sebbi  were  two  petty  kings,  subject  to  Wulfhere,  paramount 
king  of  all  Mercia.    Jaruman  was  bishop  of  Litchfield. 


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A.D.  669.]         THEODORE  ARCHBISHOP.  107 

Egbert,  the  greatest  of  the  English  kings,  who  had  con- 
sulted him  on  the  state  of  the  church,  and  the  question  re- 
garding the  feast  of  Easter.  Soon  afterwards  he  sent  over 
Theodore,  whom  he  had  consecrated  archbishop  [of  Can- 
terbury]. 

[a.d.  669.]  Theodore^  ordained  Putta  to  the  see  of  Ko- 
cbester  in  the  place  of  Damianus,  and  at  the  request  of 
King  Wulfhere  he  translated  Cedd  from  the  monastery  of 
Lestingham  to  the  see  of  Lichefeld^,  where  he  became 
celebrated  for  miracles,  which  will  be  related  in  their  proper 
place.  King  Oswy  falling  sick  and  dying,  he  was  suc- 
ceeded by  his  son  Egfrid,  in  the  third  year  of  whose-  reign 
Theodore  assembled  a  council  of  bishops,  the  decrees  of 
which  will  have  a  place  in  our  last  Book.  After  this, 
Theodore  deposed  Winfiid,  bishop  of  the  Mercians,  for 
some  act  of  insubordination,  and  ordfdned  Sexwulf  in  his 
stead.  He  also  made  Erconwald  bishop  of  London  in 
the  time  of  the  kings  Sebbi  and  Sighere.  The  miracles 
wrought  by  Erconwald  will  be  mentioned  in  their  place. 
At  that  time  [a.d.  676  ^1,  Ethelred,  king  of  the  Mercians, 
ravaged  Kent,  and  laid  Eochester  in  ruins.  Putta,  the 
bishop,  retired,  and  Chichelm  was  appointed  to  the  see  in 
his  place ;  he  also  was  compelled  to  relinquish  it  from  the 
penury  to  which  it  was  reduced.  He  was  succeeded  by  Geb- 
mund.  That  same  year  [a.d.  678^]  a  comet  was  visible 
every  morning  for  three  months. 

Egfrid,  king  of  Northumbria,  expelled  Wilfrid  from 
his  bishopric^.  In  his  place  Bosa  was  appointed  to  the 
diocese  of  Deira,  and  Eata  to  that  of  Bemicia,  the  one 
having  his  cathedral  at  York,  the  other  at  Haugulstad  or  at 
Idndisfame.  At  that  time  also  Eadhed  was  ordained  bishop 
over  the  province  of  Lindsey,  which  King  Egfrid  had  lately 
wrested  from  Wulfhere.  Eadhed  was  the  first  bishop,  Ethel- 
win  the  second,  Edgar  the  third,  and  Kinebert  the  fourth; 
who,  according  to  Bede,  held  it  in  his  time.  Before  Eadhed, 
it  was  governed  by  Serwulf,  who  was  also  bishop  both  of 
the  Mercians  and  die  Middle-Angles ;  so  that  when  he  was 

>'  Bede,  book  iv.  cc.  2.  6.  15. 

2  "  The  field  of  the  dead."    The  see  of  Lichfield,  now  founded,  was  for 
a  short  time^  in  the  reign  of  Oi!a,  an  archbishopric. 
8  Sax.  Chron.  *  Bede,  book  iv.  c  12. 


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108  HENRY   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  m. 

expelled  from  Lindsey,  he  retained  his  jurisdiction  over 
those  provinces.  Archbishop  Theodore  consecrated  Eadhed, 
Bosa,  and  Eata  at  York;  and  three  years  after  the  de- 
parture of  Wilfrid,  he  added  two  other  bishops  to  their 
number,  Tumbert  for  the  church  of  Haugulstad,  Eata  re- 
maining at  Lindisfame ;  and  Trumwine  to  the  province  of 
the  Picts,  which  was  at  that  time  subject  to  the  Enghsh. 
Eadhed  returning  from  Lindsey,  because  King  Ethehed 
had  recovered  that  province,  governed  the  church  of  Ripon. 
[a.d.  681.]  Our  seventh  division  relates  to  the  conver- 
sion of  the  South-Saxons',  which  was  accompHshed  by 
Wilfrid,  who  when  he  was  expelled  from  his  bishopric,  as 
already  mentioned,  after  visiting  Rome,  retin:ned  into 
Britain,  and  converted  to  the  faith  the  South-Saxons,  con- 
sisting of  7000  famines.  Ethelwalch,  their  king,  had  been 
baptized  shortly  before  in  the  province  of  Mercia  by  the 
persuasion  of  King  Wulfhere,  who  was  his  godfather,  and  in 
token  of  adoption  gave  him  the  Isle  of  Wight  and  the  dis- 
trict of  Meanwara^  in  the  nation  of  the  West-Saxons.  With 
the  conciurence,  therefore,  or  rather  to  the  great  satisfaction 
of  the  king,  the  preaching  of  Wilfrid  brought  first  the 
nobles  and  soldiers,  and  then  the  rest  of  the  people,  to  the 
sacred  fount  of  ablution.  On  that  very  day  rain  fell,  the 
failure  of  which  for  three  years  had  caused  a  grievous 
famine,  by  which  the  coimtiy  was  depopulated.  So  much 
so,  that  it  is  reported,  that  forty  or  fifty  men,  exhausted 
with  himger,  would  go  together  to  some  precipice  over- 
hauging  the  sea,  and  hand-in-hand  cast  themselves  over  to 
perish  by  the  fall  or  be  swallowed  up  by  the  waves.  But 
the  rain  thus  concurring  with  the  baptism,  the  earth  re- 
vived again,  fresh  verdure  was  restored  to  the  fields,  and 
the  season  becsime  prosperous  and  fruitful.  Thus  the 
hearts  and  the  flesh  of  all  rejoiced  in  the  living  God.  The 
bishop  also  taught  the  people  to  fish  in  the  sea ;  for,  up  to 
that  time,  they  had  fished  only  for  eels.  Having  collected 
nets,  he  had  ikem  cast  in  the  sea,  and  300  fishes  being 
taken,  he  gave  100  to  the  poor,  100  to  the  owners  of  the 
nets,  reserving  100  for  his  own  disposal.  Seeing  which, 
the  people  listened  more  willingly  to  the  promises  of  spiri- 

*  Bede,  book  iv.  cc  13-15.  ^  Part  of  Hampshire. 


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A.D.  681-6.]         ISLES   OF   SELSET  AND   WIGHT  109 

tual  good  from  one  from  whom  they  derived  temporal 
benefits.  King  Ethelwalch  had  granted  him  an  island  con- 
taining 87  families  called  Selsey,  or  the  island  of  the  Sea- 
Calf.  It  is  surroimded  on  all  sides  by  the  sea,  except  the 
space  of  a  sling's-cast  towards  the  west.  Such  a  place  is 
called  by  the  Latins  a  peninsula,  by  the  Greeks  a  cherso- 
nesus.  Here  Wilfrid  foimded  a  church  and  monastery, 
where  he  lived  for  five  years,  that  is,  tmtil  the  death  of 
King  Egfrid ;  having  converted  and  given  fi:eedom  to  250 
men  and  women  slaves  who  were  attached  to  the  land^ 

[a.d.  685.]  Meanwhile,  Ceadwalla,  a  young  man  of  the 
royal  race  of  the  Gewissse,  being  banished  from  his  coimtry, 
invaded  Sussex  and  slew  King  Ethelwalch ;  but  he  was  soon 
afterwards  expelled  by  the  king's  commanders,  Berthun 
and  Andhun,  who  before^  held  the  government  [of  that 
province].  When,  however,  Ceadwalla  became  king  of  the 
Gewissse,  he  put  Berthun  to  death,  and  both  he  and  his 
successors  grievously  ravaged  that  province ;  so  that  during 
the  whole  period,  Wilfrid  having  been  recalled  home,  it  was 
without  a  bishop  of  its  own,  and  was  subject  to  the  Bishop 
of  Winchester. 

Ceadwalla  likewise  •\  when  he  became  king,  conquered 
the  Isle  of  Wight,  the  inhabitants  of  which  were  still  idola- 
ters, and  in  fulfilment  of  a  vow  granted  the  fourth  part  of 
the  island  to  Bishop  Wilfrid,  who  happened  to  be  there 
on  a  visit  from  his  own  nation.  The  island  is  of  the  mea- 
surement belonging  to  1200  families,  so  that  the  posses- 
sion given  to  the  bishop  included  300.  The  two  sons 
of  Atwald,  the  king  of  the  island  who  had  been  already 
slain,  being  also  about  to  be  put  to  death,  the  Abbot  of 
Ketford^,  that  is  **the  Ford  of  Keeds,"  obtained  leave  from 
King  Ceadwalla  to  baptize  them  first.  Thus  the  Isle  of 
Wight  was  the  last  district  of  Britain  which  was  converted; 

*  This  cliiircli  and  monastery,  shortly  afterwards,  in  711,  were  made  the 
seat  of  the  first  bishop  of  the  South-Saxons.  In  1070  Bishop  Stigand 
translated  it  to  Chichester.  There  are  no  vestiges  remaining  of  the  former 
cathedral,  Selsey  Island  itself  having  entirely  disappeared,  from  the  gradual 
encroachments  of  the  sea  on  the  Sussex  coast 

^  Bede  says  "  afterwards,"  which  seems  a  better  reading  than  Henry  of 
Huntingdon's. 

^  Bede,  book  iv.  c.  10. 

^  Eedbridge,  at  the  head  of  the  Southampton  Water. 


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110  HENRY  OF  HUiniNGDON.  [BOOK  HI. 

and  when  all  the  p'royinces  of  Britain  had  received  the 
Christian  Mth,  the  Archhishop  Theodore,  that  he  might 
confirm  the  Mth  hoth  of  the  old  and  new  converts,  held  a 
comicil  of  the  hishops  of  Britain  to  expound  the  Catholic 
helief ;  and  what  they  declared  was  committed  to  writing 
for  a  perpetual  memorial.  Which  synodal  letter  I  have 
judged  it  right  to  prefix  to  the  heginning  of  the  following 
Book,  in  vdiich  is  purposed  a  continuation  of  the  acts  of 
the  Christian  kings  of  the  English  to  the  time  of  the  arrival 
and  wars  of  the  Danes ;  all  the  divisions  of  this  present 
Book  being  now  completed  in  the  order  I  proposed. 


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A.D.  680.]  SYNOD   OF  HATFIELD.  Ill 


BOOK  IV.  ^ 

"  In  the  name  of  otir  Lord  and  Saviour  Jesus  Christ  : 
in  the  reigns  of  our  most  pious  lords,  Egfrid,  king  of  the 
Humhrians,  his  tenth  year;  Centwine,  king  of  Wessex, 
the  fifth  year  of  his  reign ;  Etheh-ed,  king  of  the  Mercians, 
the  sixth  year  of  his  reign;  Aldulf,  king  of  the  East- 
Angles,  the  seventeenth  year  of  his  reign;  and  Lothaire,  king 
of  Kent,  the  seventh  year  of  his  reign ;  on  ihe  17th  day  of 
[the  kalends  of]  October,  ihe  seventh  indiction ;  Theodore, 
by  the  grace  of  God  Archbishop  of  Canterbury  and  of  the 
whole  island  of  Britain,  presiding,  and  the  other  bishops  of 
the  British  Island,  venerable  men,  sitting  with  him  at  the 
place  which  in  the  Saxon  tongue  is  called  Hethfeld^;  the 
holy  gospels  being  placed  before  them. 

"  Having  consulted  together,  we  have  set  forth  the  true 
and  orthodox  belief,  as  our  Lord  Jesus  Christ,  when  incar- 
nate, delivered  it  to  his  disciples  who  saw  him  present  and 
heard  his  words,  and  as  it  has  been  handed  down  to  us  by 
the  creed  of  the  holy  Fathers,  and,  in  general,  by  all  the 
holy  and  universal  councils,  and  with  one  voice  by  all  the 

'  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  in  ihia  Fonrth  Book,  retnms  to  the  goieral  his- 
tory of  the  Bnglish  kings  and  people,  the  thread  of  which  he  had  broken,  to 
introduce  in  his  Third  Book  an  account  of  their  conversion,  and  of  ecclesiasti- 
cal affiiirs  generallj,  to  the  time  when  the  last  of  the  kings  of  the  Heptarchy- 
embraced  the  Chnstian  &ith ;  the  period  ranging  from  the  arrival  of  St. 
Augustine  and  the  conversion  of  Ethelbert  and  the  kingdom  of  Kent,  a.d. 
597,  to  that  of  the  South-Saxons,  a.d.  681.  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  how- 
ever, commences  this  Fourth  Book  by  inserting  a  document,  the  synodal 
letter  of  the  Council  held  at  Hatfield  [a.d.  680],  which  properly  belongs  to 
the  subject  of  the  Third  Book ;  and  as  it  would  have  formed  a  fitter  con- 
clusion to  that  part  of  his  history,  one  does  not  see  why  it  was  reserved  for 
the  commencement  of  this.  Henry  of  Huntingdon  stUl  follows  Bede,  as 
his  main  authority,  to  the  point  where  Bede's  History  ends,  in  731 ;  making 
also  occasional  use  of  the  Saxon  Chronicle. 

«  This  Council  was  held  A.D.  680,  at  BishopVHatfield,  in  Hertfordshire. 


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lia  HENRY  OF   HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  IV. 

approved  doctors  of  the  Catholic  Church.  We,  therefore, 
following  them  religiously  and  orthodoxly,  in  conformity 
with  their  divinely-inspired  doctrine,  do  profess  that  we 
firmly  believe  and  confess,  according  to  the  holy  Fathers, 
properly  and  truly,  the  Father  and  the  Son  and  the  Holy 
Ghost,  a  Trinity  consubstantial  in  unity,  and  unity  in 
trinity;  that  is,  one  God  subsisting  in  three  consubstantial 
persons  of  equal  glory  and  honoin:." 

And  after  more  of  this  sort  appertaining  to  the  profession 
of  the  true  faith,  the  holy  Council  added  this  to  its  synodal 
letter :  "  We  accept  the  ^\e  holy  and  general  coimcils  of  the 
blessed  Fathers  acceptable  to  God ;  viz.,  that  of  Nice,  where 
318  bishops  were  assembled  against  the  heretic  Anus  and  his 
most  impious  doctrines ;  that  of  Constantinople,  composed 
of  150  bishops,  against  the  insane  tenets  of  Macedonius 
and  Eudoxius ;  the  first  council  of  Ephesus,  of  200  bishops, 
against  the  wicked  subtlety  of  Nestorius  and  his  doctrines , 
that  of  Chalcedon,  composed  of  430  bishops  against  Euty- 
ches  and  Nestorius  and  their  tenets ;  and  the  fifth  council 
which  was  again  assembled  at  Constantinople  in  the  reign 
.  of  Justinian  the  younger,  against  Theodore  and  Theodoret, 
as  well  as  the  epistles  of  Iba  and  their  controversies  with 
Cyril."  And  a  little  afterwards:  "We  receive  also  the 
council  held  at  Kome,  when  the  most  holy  Martin  was  Pope, 
the  first  indiction,  and  in  the  ninth  year  of  the  most  pious 
Emperor  Constantine :  and  we  glorify  our  Lord  Jesus  Christ 
as  the  holy  Fathers  glorified  Him,  neither  adding  nor  dimi- 
nishing anything;  and  we  anathematize  with  heart  and 
mouth  those  whom  they  anathematized,  and  whom  they 
received  we  receive,  giving  glory  to  God  the  Father,  who 
was  without  beginning,  and  to  his  only-begotten  Son,  be- 
gotten by  the  Father  before  all  ages,  and  to  the  Holy  Ghost, 
proceeding  firom  the  Father  and  the  Son  in  an  ineffable 
manner,  as  they  taught  who  have  been  already  mentioned, 
the  holy  apostles,  prophets,  and  doctors.  We  also,  who 
with  Theodore,  archbishop,  have  thus  set  forth  the  Catholic 
faith,  have  subscribed  our  names  thereto." 

There  were  present  at  this  synod,  John,  the  precentor 
of  the  church  of  St.  Peter  at  Kome,  and  abbot  of  the  mo- 
nastery of  St.  Martin,  who  had  lately  come  from  Eome  by 
order  of  Pope  Agatho,  as  also  the  venerable  Abbot  Bene- 


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A.D.  686.]  WEST  SAXONS   INVADE   KENT.  113 

diet  who  had  founded  a  monastery  dedicated  to  St.  Peter 
near  the  mouth  of  the  river  Were  ^  He  had  gone  to  Eome 
to  obtain  a  confirmation  of  the  privileges  granted  to  that 
monastery  by  King  Egbert,  and  now  returned  in  company 
with  the  said  John  tbe  precentor.  Benedict  was  succeeded 
by  Abbot  Ceolfidd,  imder  whom  Bede  lived..  John  taught 
them  to  sing  in  tins  monastery  after  the  Eoman .  practice. 
He  also  left  there  a  copy  of  the  decrees  of  the  council 
held  by  Pope  Martin,  at  which  he  was  present.  As  he  was 
returning  to  Rome,  carrying  with  him  the  testimony  of  the 
conformity  of  the  faith  of  3ie  English  bishops,  he  died  on 
the  way  at  Tours,  where  he  was  bmied^. 

Having  now  treated  of  these  [ecclesiastical]  affairs,  I 
return  to  a  continuation  of  the  history  of  the  English 
kings,  from  which  we  broke  off  at  the  end  of  the  Second 
Book* :  and  the  sequel  of  oiu"  narrative  must  be  connected 
with  that  context,  that  it  may  now  proceed  in  regular  order. 

[a.I).  686.]  After  the  death  of  Kentwin,  kmg  of  the 
West-Saxons,  Ceadwall,  who  succeeded  him,  with  Qie  aid  of 
his  brother  Mul,  obtained  by  force  possession  of  the  Isle 
of  Wight.  This  Mul,  his  brother,  was  a  man  of  courteous 
and  pleasing  manners,  of  prodigious  strength,  and  of  noble 
aspect,  so  that  he  was  generally  esteemed,  and  his  renown 
was  very  great.  These  two  brothers  made  an  irruption  into 
the  province  of  Kent  for  the  sake  of  exhibiting  their  prowess 
and  augmenting  their  glory.  They  were  not  yet  baptized, 
though  their  predecessors,  and  the  whole  nation,  had  be- 
come Christians.  They  met  with  no  opposition  in  their 
invasion  of  Kent,  and  plundered  the  whole  kingdom.  For, 
at  this  time,  the  throne  was  vacant  by  the  death  of  Lothaire, 
king  of  Kent.  This  enterprising  kmg  had  been  wounded 
in  a  battle  with  the  East-Saxons,  against  whom  he  had 
marched  in  concert  with  Edric,  son  of  Egbert,  and  so 
severe  were  his  woimds,  that  he  died  in  the  hands  of  those 
who  endeavom-ed  to  heal  them.     After  him  Edric  reigned 

*  Now  Monk-Wearmouth,  where  Venerable  Bede  passed  the  early  part  of 
his  monastic  life. 

*  Bede's  Eccles.  Hist.,  book  iv.  cc.  17,  18. 

^  Book  II.  concludes  with  the  year  681,  the  period  of  the  conversion 
of  the  last  of  the  Anglo-Saxon  kingdoms,  and  with  a  summary  of  the  reigns 
of  all  the  kings  of  the  Heptarchy  to  that  time.    See  p.  63. 

I 


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114  HENBT  OF  HUNITNODON.  [BOOK  IV. 

one  year  in  ELent  without  the  love  and  respect  of  his 
peopled  Meanwhile  [a.d.  684]  died  Egfiid,  king  of 
Northumbria.  The  year  before  he  had  sent  an  army  into 
Ireland  imder  his  general  Beorht,  who  miserably  wasted  the 
inoffensive  inhabitants,  though  they  had  been  always  friendly 
to  the  English.  However,  tibe  Irish  made  all  the  resistance 
they  could,  and,  imploring  the  aid  of  the  divine  mercy, 
invoked  the  vengeance  erf  God  on  tbeir  enemies  wi&i 
continual  imprecations.  Those,  indeed,  who  curse  cannot 
inherit  the  kingdom  of  heaven ;  but  it  is  believed  that 
those  who  were  thus  justly  cursed,  on  account  of  their 
cruelty,  did  soon  suffer  the  penalty  of  their  guilt  imder  the 
avenging  hand  oi  God.  For  the  very  next  year  srfterwards, 
that  same  king,  rashly  leading  his  anny  to  ravage  the  country 
of  the  Picts,  much  against  the  advice  of  his  friends,  and 
particularly  of  Outhbert,  of  blessed  memory,  lately  ordained 
bishop  (for  the  same  year  the  king  had  made  him  bishop 
of  LindisfiEtme),  he  was  drawn  by  a  feigned  retreat  of  the 
enemy  into  the  recesses  of  inaccessible  mountains,  where  he 
was  cut  off  with  tiae  greatest  part  of  his  army.  It  was  his 
lot  to  fgdl  of  hearing  ihe  shouts  for  his  recall  raised  by  his 
friends,  as  he  had  reftised  to  hear  tiie  voice  of  Father 
Egbert,  dissuading  him  fr^m  the  inva^on  of  the  Irish  who 
had  done  him  no  wrcmg. 

From  that  time  the  hopes  and  courage  of  the  English 
began  to  fail,  and,  "  tottering,  to  slide  backwards : "  for  on 
the  one  hand,  the  Picts  recovered  that  part  of  their  territory 
which  had  been  occupied  by  the  English,  and  on  the  other, 
the  Britons  regained  some  degree  of  liberty,  which  they 
still  ^oy^.  Among  the  fugitives  was  a  man  of  God, 
named  Trumwine,  abbot  of  Abercom,  a  place  just  within 
the  English  pale,  but  near  the  straits  which  divide  the 
country  of  the  English  from  that  of  the  Picts.  He  retired 
to  the  monastery  of  Streneshalch  '*,  often  mentioned  before, 
and  there  he  died.  On  King  Egfrid's  death  he  was  suc- 
ceeded by  Alfrid,  a  man  very  learned  in  the  Scriptures,  who 
is  reported  to  have  been  i^frid's  brother,  and  the  son  of 

^  Bede,  book  iv.  c.  26. 

^  i.  e.  in  the  time  of  Bede,  frcnn  whom  Henry  of  Huntingdon  is  quoting ; 
**  which  they  have  now  enjoyed,"  8»y»  Bede,  "  for  abomt  46  years." 
Book  iv.  c.  26.  *  Whitby. 


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A.D.  687.]  mul's  death  bevengkd.  115 

King  Oswy:  he  nobly  retrieved  the  ruined  condition  of 
the  kingdom,  though  it  was  now  reduced  within  narrower 
bounds. 

[a.d.  687.]  Ceadwall,  in  the  second  year  of  his  reign, 
gave  permission  to  his  brother  Mul,  a  brave  warrior,  to 
make  a  predatory  excursion  into  Kent,  followed  by  a  band 
of  brave  youths.  He  was  alliu-ed  by  the  rich  booty  which 
had  been  gained  the  preceding  year  \  nor  did  he  despise 
the  reward  of  a  ^orious  renown.  On  this  irruption  into 
Kent,  finding  no  one  able  to  resist  him,  the  country  was 
reduced  to  a  solitude  by  his  ravages,  and  he  cruelly  afflicted 
the  inoffensive  servants  of  Christ  But  he  was  made  to 
feel  the  justice  of  their  curses.  For  believing  the  enemy  to 
be  quite  enervated,  and  foreseeing  no  opposition  to  his 
violence,  he  made  an  attempt  to  plunder  a  certain  mansion 
remote  from  his  camp,  followed  by  only  twelve  soldiers. 
Finding  himself,  however,  here  surrounded  by  numbers  he 
had  not  expected,  be  fought  desperately,  and  slew  many  of 
the  enemy;  but  resistance  was  vain,  for  though  he  stood 
his  groimd  against  their  assaults,  they  had  recoin^e  to 
setting  fire  to  the  house,  and  Mul,  with  every  one  of  his 
twelve  followers,  perished  in  the  flames.  Thus  fell  the 
flower  of  the  youth  of  Wessex,  upon  which  his  band  of 
yoimg  warriors  dispersed ;  and  thus  it  appears  how  vain 
is  all  confidence  in  human  might,  when  opposed  to  the 
almighty  power  of  God.  "When  this  reverse  was  reported 
to  Ceadwall,  he  again  entered  Kent,  and  after  a  fearful 
slaughter  and  immense  pillage,  when  there  was  no  longer 
any  one  to  slay  or  anjrthing  to  plunder,  he  retired  to  his 
own  dominions,  exulting  m  his  triumphant  success  and 
cruel  revenge. 

[a.d.  688.]  After  reigning  two  years  ',  Ceadwall  abdicated 
his  kingdom  for  the  sake  o(  God,  and  of  a  kingdom  which 
is  everlasting,  and  went  to  Kome ;  considering  that  it  would 
be  a  singular  honour  for  him  to  be  baptized  tiiere  and  then 
die.  Accordingly,  Pope  Sergius  baptized  him,  giving  him 
the  name  of  the  apostie  Peter.  Seven  days  afterwards,  on 
the    20th    day  of  April,    according    to    his    wish,    the 

1  Gesdwall  hiaiself,  Bttended  by  ICol,  kd  the  inroad  the  year  before.— See 
Sax.  Chron.  "  Bede,  book  t.  c  7. 

I  2 


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116  HENRY   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  IV. 

king  died,  while  he  yet  wore  the  white  baptismal  robes. 
He  was  buried  in  the  church  of  St  Peter,  and  the  following 
epitaph  was  inscribed  on  his  tomb : — 

"  High  state  and  place,  kindred,  a  royal  crown. 
The  spoils  of  war,  great  triumphs  and  renown; 
Nobles,  and  cities  walled  to  guard  his  state. 
His  palaces  and  his  fiuniliar  seat ; 
Whatever  skill  and  valour  made  his  own. 
And  what  his  great  fore&thers  handed  down ; 
Geadwall  armipotent,  by  heaven  inspired. 
For  love  of  heav'n  left  all,  and  here  retir'd; 
Peter  to  see,  and  Peter's  holy  seat. 
The  royal  stranger  turn'd  his  pilgrim  feet ; 
Drew  from  the  fount  the  purifying  streams, 
And  shar'd  the  radiance  of  celestial  beams ; 
Exchanged  an  earthly  crown  and  barVrous  name 
For  heav'nly  glory  and  eternal  fame ; 
While,  following  Peter's  rule,  he  from  his  Lord 
Assum'd  his  name  at  Father  Sergius'  word  : 
Washed  in  the  font,  still  cloth'd  in  robes  of  white, 
Christ's  virtue  rais'd  him  to  the  realms  of  light 
Great  was  his  faith,  Christ's  mercy  greater  still. 
Whose  counsels  far  transcend  all  human  skill. 
From  Britain's  distant  isle  his  vent'rous  way, 
O'er  lands,  o'er  seas,  by  toilsome  joumeyings  lay, 
Borne  to  behold,  her  glorious  temple  see, 
And  mystic  offerings  make  on  bended  knee. 
White-rob'd  among  the  flock  of  Christ  he  shone ; 
His  flesh  to  earth,  his  soul  to  heav'n  is  gone. 
Sure  wise  was  he  to  lay  his  sceptre  down. 
And  'change  an  earthly  for  a  heav'nly  crown." 

Next  to  Ceadwall,  Ina  reigned  in  Wessex  37  years.  Ina 
was  son  of  Cenred,  who  was  son  of  Ceolwold,  who  was 
brother  of  Cinewold ;  and  both '  [Ceolwold  and  Cinewold] 
were  sons  of  Cudwine,  who  was  son  of  Ceauling,  who  was 
son  of  Cenric,  who  was  son  of  Cerdic.  In  the  second  year 
of  Ina's  reign,  Theodore,  the  archbishop,  departed  this  life, 
in  the  twenty- second  year  of  his  episcopacy.  In  his  place, 
Berthwald,  abbot  of  Keculver,  was  elected  and  consecrated 
archbishop.  Up  to  this  time,  the  archbishops  had  all  been 
Eomans,  henceforth  they  were  of  Enghsh  race.  Berthw^ald 
ordained   to  the    see   of  Kochester   Tobias,  a  man  well 

*  See  Saxon  Chronicle,  and  the  genealogy  of  the  kings  of  Wessex  in 
Florence  of  Worcester. 


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A.D.  694.]   PEACE  BETWEEN  KENT  AND  WESSEX.        117 

taught  in  the  Latm,  Greek,  and  Saxon  tongues.  At  that 
time  there  were  two  Idngs  in  Kent,  reigning  not  by  right  of 
royal  descent,  but  by  conquest,  Withred  and  Suoebhard. 

[a.d.  694.]  In  the  sixth  year  of  King  Ina,  Withred,  the 
legitimate  king  of  Kent,  being  estabhshed  on  the  throne, 
freed  his  nation  by  his  zeal  and  piety  from  foreign  invasion. 
Withred  was  the  son  of  Egbert,  who  was  son  of  Erchen- 
bert,  who  was  son  of  Eadbald,  who  was  son  of  Ethel- 
bert.  He  held  the  kingdom  of  Kent  3S  years  in  honour 
and  peace.  The  same  year  King  Ina  marched  a  formi- 
dable and  well-arrayed  army  into  Kent  to  obtain  satisfaction 
for  the  burning  of  his  kinsman  Mul.  King  Withred,  how- 
ever, advanced  to  meet  him  not  with  fierce  arrogance,  but 
with  peaceful  suppUcation,  not  with  angry  threats,  but  with 
the  honeyed  phrases  of  a  persuasive  eloquence ;  and  by 
these  he  prevailed  on  the  incensed  king  to  lay  aside  his 
arms  and  receive  from  the  people  of  Kent  a  large  siun  of 
money  as  a  compensation  for  the  murder  of  Sae  young 
prince.  Thus  the  controversy  was  ended,  and  the  peace 
now  concluded  was  lasting.  Thenceforth  the  King  of  Kent 
had  a  tranquil  reign.  The  third  year  after  this  [a.d.  697], 
the  Mercians,  who  are  also  called  South-Himibrians,  per- 
petrated a  scandalous  crime,  for  they  barbarously  murdered 
Ostrythe,  the  wife  of  their  King  Ethelred,  and  sister  of  King 
Egfrid. 

[a.d.  699.]  In  the  eleventh  year  of  Ina,  Beorht,  the 
general  of  Egfrid,  already  named,  became  a  victim  to  the 
maledictions  of  the  Irish,  whose  chm'ches  he  had  destroyed, 
just  as  his  master  had  before  suffered.  For  in  hke  manner 
as  Egfrid  invading  the  territoiy  of  the  Picts  fell  there,  so 
Beorht  marching  against  them  to  revenge  the  death  of  his 
lord  was  by  them  slain.  About  this  time  700  years  are 
reckoned  from  our  Lord's  incarnation.  Ethelred,  the  son  of 
Penda,  king  of  Mercia,  under  the  influence  of  divine  grace, 
became  a  monk  in  the  twenty-ninth  year  of  his  reign,  and 
was  buried  in  peace  at  Bardenic  ^  He  was  succeeded  by  his 
kinsman  Kenred,  who  was  like  him  in  piety  and  fortune;  for 
when  he  had  nobly  reigned  for  five  years,  he  still  more  nobly 
resigned  his  crown,  and  going  to  Kome,  became  a  monk,  in 

1  Bardney  Abbey,  in  Lincolnshire. 


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118  HENRY   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  17. 

the  pontificate  of  Pope  Constantine,  and  remained  there  to 
the  end  of  his  days.  With  him  went  OflGa,  son  of  Sighew, 
king  of  the  East-Saxons,  who  would  otherwise  haye  sntf- 
ceeded  to  the  kingdom,  but  coming  to  Eome  in  the  same 
spirit  of  devotion,  he  also  submitted  to  the  monastic  rule. 
We  may  well  imitate  the  blessed  resolve  of  these  two  kings, 
Ethebed  and  Kenred,  whose  names  are  h^d  in  everlasting 
remembrance.  Relinquishing  their  crowns,  their  wives,  their 
cities,  their  kindred,  and  all  they  possessed,  they  became 
an  example  to  thousands  for  doing  the  like.  O,  gracious 
God!  how  glorious  will  be  the  crowns  which  Tbou  wilt 
restore  to  them,  and  which  Thou,  the  great  high  priest,  wilt 
Thyself  place  on  their  heads  in  the  day  of  joy  and  triumph, 
when  all  the  millions  of  the  heavenly  hosts,  and  of  saints 
from  the  earth,  accompanying  those  holy  kings,  and  desiring 
to  see  their  faces,  they  shall  bear  firuit,  not  a  hundred,  but 
a  thousand-fold,  fruit  of  a  sweet  savour,  fruit  much  to  be 
desired,  and  which  shall  be  grateful  even  in  tliy  sight,  O 
merciful  God !  Who,  even  now,  kindled  by  the  fire  of  ihe 
Holy  Spirit,  would  not  follow  the  example  of  those  kings 
who  are  kings  indeed,  that  their  joy  may  be  still  increased 
by  fresh  firuits,  and  that  they  may  present  to  Thee  richer 
offerings  of  those  who  follow  them  in  righteousness,  with 
holy  triumph !  Alas  !  I  must  cut  short  my  discourse  con- 
cerning these  kings  of  heaven,  but  I  pray  that  it  may  be 
fixed  in  our  abject  and  sluggish  souls.  Returning  now  from 
heaven  to  earth,  we  find  that  Ceolred  succeeded  these 
kings  in  the  kingdom  of  Mercia,  which  he  governed  with 
honour  for  eight  years,  inheriting  his  father's  and  grand- 
father's virtues. 

[a.d.  705  ^]  In  the  twentieth  year  of  his  reign,  Ina  divided 
the  bishopric  of  Wessex,  which  had  formed  one  diocese, 
into  two  ^.  The  eastern  part  from  the  woods  [the  Weald], 
was  held  by  Daniel,  the  western  byAldhelm^  who  was  suc« 

1  Bede,  book  v.  c.  18. 

^  Henry  of  Huntingdon  here  &11b  into  two  eitors ;  first,  the  division  of 
the  diocese  of  Wessex  was  made  in  the  seventemth  year  of  King  Ina^ 
JLD.  705;  secondly,  Aldhelm  died  a.d.  709,  in  the  twenty-first,  not  the 
twentieth  year  of  Ina.     His  dates  are  erroneous  to  the  year  725. — Petrie, 

^  Daniel  was  Bishop  of  Winchester,  the  see  of  which  included  the 
counties  of  Hants,  Surrey,  Sussex,  and  the  Isle  of  Wight.     Aldhelm  was 


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A.D.  705.]  BEATH  OF   WILFRID,  119 

ceeded  by  Forthere.  The  same  year  Bishop  Wilfrid,  who 
will  not  be  forgotten  in  my  Book  of  Miracles,  died  at 
Oundle,  in  tiie  forty-fifth  year  of  his  episcopacy,  and  was 
buried  at  Eipon^  The  next  year,  Ina,  and  Nun  his  kins- 
man, fought  with  Gerent,  king  of  Wales  ^.  In  the  be- 
ginning of  this  battle  Sigbald,  a  general,  was  slain;  at 
length,  however,  Gerent  and  his  followers  were  put  to 
flight,  leaving  their  arms  and  spoils  to  the  enemy  who  pur- 
sued them.  At  that  time  also,  Beorhtfrith,  the  ealdorman, 
checked  the  arrogance  of  the  Picts,  engaging  them  between 
Hsefeh  and  Caere,  and  by  the  numbers  that  were  slain  he 
revenged  the  deaths  of  Kmg  Egfrid  and  his  general  Beorht. 
Acca,  his  priest,  succeeded  Wilfrid  as  bishop.  Alfrid,  king 
oi  Northumbria,  had  died  four  years  before  [a.d.  705]  at 
Driffield,  having  not  quite  completed  the  twenty-fourth  year 
of  his  reign.  He  was  succeeded  by  his  son  Osred,  a  youth 
only  eight  years  old.  He  reigned  eleven  years,  and  fell  in 
battle  by  the  chance  of  war  near  Mere  [a.d.  716].  Cenred 
his  successor  reigned  two  years ;  after  whose  death,  Osric 
reigned  there  eleven  years.  All  these  four  kings,  therefore, 
governed  Northumbria  in  the  time  of  King  Ina. 

[a.d.  715.]  There  was  a  battle  between  Ina,  in  the  twenty- 
sixth  year  of  his  reign,  and  Ceolred,  king  of  Mercia,  the 
son  of  Ethelred,  near  Wonebirih^,  where  &e  slaughter  was 
so  great  on  both  sides,  that  it  is  difficult  to  say  who  sus- 
tained the  severest  loss.  The  year  following  the  same 
Ceolred,  king  of  Mercia,  departed  this  life,  and  was  buried 
at  Litchfield.  He  was  succeeded  in  the  kingdom  of  Mercia 
by  Ethelbald,  a  brave  and  active  prince,  who  reigned  vic- 
toriously 41  years.     That  same  year  Egbert,  a  venerable 

8|^inted  to  tlie  new  bbfaoprie  of  Sberbome,  consistiiig  of  the  comities  of 
I>or8et,  Somerset,  Wilts,  Devon,  and  Cornwall.  This  see  continued  for 
more  than  three  centuries,  -vrhen  it  was  remoyed  first  to  Wilton,  afterwards 
to  Old  Sanim,  and  finally  to  New  Sarum,  or  Salisbury. — Giles. 

*  Bede,  book  v.  c.  19. 

^  Henry  of  Huntingdon  means  GomwalL  Higbald  was  skin  the  same 
year,  but  not  in  this  battle. — See  Scix.  Chi'on.,  a.d.  710. 

•  Or  Wodnesbeorg  (Woden's  town) ;  Wanboroiigh,  on  the  Wiltshire 
downs,  mentioned  in  a  former  note.  "  There  is  no  reason  to  transfer  the 
scene  of  action  to  Woodbridge,  as  some  have  supposed,  from  an  erroneous 
reading." — Ingram, 


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120  HENRY  OP  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  IV. 

man,  brought  over  the  monks  of  Hii^  to  the  Catholic  ob- 
servance of  Easter  and  the  CathoUc  tonsure.  Havmg  hved 
with  them  fourteen  years,  and  being  fiilly  satisfied  with  the 
reformation  of  the  brotherhood,  during  the  paschal  solemni- 
ties on  the  feast  of  Easter  he  rejoiced  that  he  had  seen  the 
day  of  the  Lord,  "  he  saw  it,  and  was  glad."  At  that  time^ 
Naiton,  king  of  the  Picts,  was  converted  to  the  true  Pasch 
by  a  letter  of  admonition  addressed  to  him  by  Abbot  Ceol- 
Md,  who,  after  the  death  of  Benedict  before  mentioned, 
presided  in  the  monastery  which  is  situated  at  the  mouth  of 
the  river  Wear,  and  near  the  river  Tyne,  at  a  place  called 
Ingirvus'.  The  letter  which  he  wrote  to  the  king  concern- 
ing the  Pasch  and  the  greater  tonsm*e  was  full  of  weight, 
so  that  what  the  abbot  recommended  in  his  letter,  the  king 
enforced  by  his  royal  authority  throughout  his  kingdom  *. 
About  this  time  Cuthbiu:h,  sister  of  Cwenburh,  who  had 
been  married  to  Egfrid,  king  of  Northumbria,  but  sepa- 
rated from  him  during  his  life,  founded  an  abbey  at  Wine- 
bume  ^. 

[a.d.  725.]  Ina,  in  the  thirty-sixth  year  of  his  reign, 
marched  his  army  into  Sussex,  and  fought  against  the  South- 
Saxons  with  vigom*  and  success.  In  this  batUe  he  slew 
Ealdbert,  whom  he  had  before  compelled  to  flee  from  a 
castle  called  Taunton,  which  Ina  had  built.  This  same 
Eadbert,  the  Etheling,  who  was  the  king's  enemy,  had  got 
possession  of  the  castle,  but  Ina's  Queen  Ethelburga 
stormed  and  razed  it  to  the  ground,  compelling  Eadbert 
,to  escape  into  Surrey.  The  same  year,  Withred,  king  of 
Kent,  died,  after  a  reign  of  almost  34  years,  leaving  three 

'  lona,  or  Icomkill. 

^  Henry  of  Huntingdon  transposes  the  acts  of  Egbert  and  Ceolfrid  in  this 
controversy.  Bede,  book  v.  c.  21,  makes  the  letter  of  Ceolfrid  to  Naiton  pre- 
cede the  conversion  of  the  monks  of  lona.     Its  supposed  date  is  a.d.  710. 

•  Jarrow,  between  the  Wear  and  the  Tyne. 

*  This  long  epistle  is  given  in  full  by  Bede,  book  v.  c.  21.  See  an  expla- 
nation of  the  controversy  concerning  Easter  by  Professor  de  Morgan,  of 
University  College,  London.  As  to  the  tonsure,  see  Dr.  Giles's  note  in 
Bede's  Ecclesiastical  History,  book  iii.  c.  26.  The  Roman  clergy  shaved  the 
crown  of  the  head  in  a  circle ;  the  Scottish  priests  permitted  the  hair  to  grow 
on  the  back,  and  shaved  the  forep&rt  of  the  head  from  ear  to  ear,  in  the  form 
of  a  crescent,  *  Wimbum,  Dorsetshire. 


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A.D.  728.]  INA  GOES  TO  BOMB.  121 

sons  his  heirs,  Ethelbert,  Edbert,  and  Ahic.  About  this 
time  Tobias,  bishop  of  Eochester,  the  disciple  of  Arch- 
bishop Theodore  and  Abbot  Adrian,  departed  this  life,  and 
was  succeeded  by  Aldwulf. 

[a.d.  728.]  Ina,  that  powerful  and  prosperous  king,  re- 
signing his  crown  to  Ethelward,  his  kinsman,  went  to  Rome  ^, 
and  there,  a  pilgrim  upon  earth,  was  enrolled  in  the  service 
of  heaven.  How  rapid  are  the  changes  of  the  world  may 
be  remarked  from  what  occurred  in  the  time  of  this  king. 
During  his  reign  ^  the  emperors  were,  Justinian  the  younger, 
who  reigned  ten  years ;  Leo,  three  years ;  Tiberius,  seven 
years ;  Justinian  II.,  six  years ;  Phihp,  one  year  and  a  half; 
Anastasius,  three  years ;  Theodosius,  one  year ;  Leo,  nine 
years ;  and  Constantine,  in  the  third  year  of  whose  reign 
Ina  went  to  Rome.  The  successors  of  the  apostles  in 
his  time  were  these :  Popes  Sergius,  John,  another  John, 
Sisinnius,  Constantine,  and  Gregory,  in  whose  pontificate 
Ina,  voluntarily  rehnquishing  worldly  ambition,  became  an 
exile.  The  line  of  the  kings  of  the  Franks,  in  the  time  of 
Ina  was  this :  King  Childeric,  King  Theodoric,  King  Clo- 
vis,  King  Childebert,  King  Dagobert.  In  the  time  of 
Ina,  there  were  admitted  to  the  heavenly  mansions,  St. 
Heddi,  bishop  of  Winchester;  St.  Guthrac,  hermit  of 
Croyland ;  and  St.  John,  archbishop  of  York.  The  two 
kings  nearly  connected,  Ceadwall  and  Ina,  excelling  in 
strength,  which  they  possessed  in  common  with  brutes,  but 
more  excellent  in  their  sanctity,  in  which  they  were  par- 
takers of  the  nature  of  angels,  acted  nobly,  whence  "  all 
generations  shall  call  them  blessed."  So  also  two  nearly 
connected  kings  of  Mercia,  Ethelred  and  Kenred,  had  done 
before ;  who,  resigning  all  false  pretensions  to  good,  gained 
the  true  and  highest  good,  which  is  God.  Let,  then,  the 
kings  who  are  now  ruling  imitate  these  wise  and  blessed 
kings,  instead  of  insane  and  unhappy  princes,  the  difference 
of  whose  Uves,  and  of  the  end  of  their  lives,  my  present 

»  Bede,  book  v.  c.  7 ;  Saxon  Chronicle  [a.!).  728],  "This  year  King  Ina 
went  to  Borne,  and  there  gave  up  the  ghost''  The  establishment  of  the 
''  English  School "  at  Rome  is  attributed  to  Ina ;  a  full  account  of  which, 
and  of  the  origin  of  Rome-Scot,  or  Peter-pence,  for  the  support  of  it,  may  be 
seen  in  Matthew  of  Westminster. 

^  Ina  reigned  in  Wessex  37  years. — Bede. 


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IJW  HENBT  OF  HUNTmODON.  [bOOK  IV. 

work  exhibits.  Wherefore  the  four  kings  I  have  named  are 
Hghts  to  all  the  kings  of  the  earth,  affording  them  examples 
for  imitating  the  good,  and  leaving  than  no  excuse  for  imi- 
tating the  evil.  And  you  who  are  not  kings,  imitate  them, 
that  ye  may  become  kings  in  heaven.  For,  if  indeed,  they 
resigned  their  great  estate,  while  you  are  unwilling  to  re* 
sign  your  lesser  advantages,  those  holy  kings  will  be  judges 
of  yom'  just  condemnation. 

[a.d.  728.]  In  the  first  year  of  Ethelward,  king  oi  Wessex, 
he  fought  a  battle  with  Oswald,  a  young  prince  of  the  royal 
blood* ,  who  aspired  to  the  crown.  For  Oswald  was  son  of 
Ethelbald,  ^o  was  son  of  Kinebald,  who  was  son  of  Cud- 
wine,  who  was  son  of  Ceaulin,  who  was  son  of  Kinric. 
But  the  followers  of  the  young  prince  being  outnumbered 
by  the  royal  troops,  though  for  some  time  he  stoutly  bore 
the  brunt  of  the  battle  and  resisted  to  the  utmost,  he  was 
compelled  to  fiee,  abandoning  his  pretensions  to  the  crown. 
The  aforesaid  king  was  therefore  firmly  established  on  the 
throne. 

In  the  third  year  of  King  Ethelward,  two^  portentous 
comets  appeared  near  the  sun,  one  preceding  its  rising,  the 
other  following  its  setting,  presaging,  as  it  were,  dreadM 
calamities  both  to  the  east  and  the  west ;  or  assuredly  one 
was  the  percursor  of  day,  the  other  of  night,  to  signify  that 
misfortunes    threatened    mankind    at  both   times.      The 

1  The  Saxon  Cfaronide  calls  him  *' the  Mthe'^Big*  Henry  of  fiantiBgdon 
inrariably  renders  tiiis  word  "a  young  man,"  or  a  "yoimg  noble."  Bat 
JEtheling  was  among  the  Anglo-Saxons  a  designation  of  rank,  generally  ap- 
plied to  the  heir  apparent  to  the  throne,  though  sometimes  extended  to  the 
more  distant  branches  of  the  royal  race ;  and,  more  rarely,  to  youths  of 
noble  blood.  The  word  is  derived  from  asdel,  noble ;  and  ling,  expressing 
condition,  as  we  say,  hireling,  &tling,  and  also  diminatives,  as  in  duckling, 
suckling,  &c.  We  use  this  title  of  honour  in  the  translation,  instead  of  the 
inexpressiye  phrases  by  which  Henry  of  Huntingdon  has  rendered  it ; 
as  sdso  of  ealdorman  fcr  "  dux,"  tliaM  for  "  consul,"  ffrieve  for  "  vice- 
comes,"  &c. 

(  ^  The  Saxon  Chronicle,  in  its  established  reading,  speaks  of  only  one 
'*  comet  star."  Some  of  the  MSS.,  however,  describe  two  comets,  a  version 
adopted  by  Bede,  book  v.  c.  28.  Henry  of  Huntingdon  follows  Ms  amplifr- 
cation  of  the  story,  which  was  probably  founded  on  this  various  reading; 
The  Saxon  Chronicle  and  Bede  give  the  date  of  a.d.  729,  which  was,  at 
farthest,  the  second,  and  not,  as  Henry  of  Huntingdon  says,  the  third  year 
of  Ethelward's  reign. 


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A.D.  729.]  KEMARKABLE  COMET.  12S 

comets  tomed  their  blazing  tails  towards  the  narih,  as  if  to 
set  the  pole  on  fire.  Their  first  appearance  was  in  the  month 
of  January,  and  they  remained  visible  for  nearly  a  fortnight. 
At  which  time,  the  Saracens,  like  a  fell  pest,  spread  de- 
Btmction  far  and  wide  in  France  and  Spain ;  but  not  long 
afterwards  they  met  in  the  same  country  the  fate  their  im- 
piety deserved^.  The  same  year,  Osric,  king  of  Northum- 
l»*ia,  departing  this  life,  left  that  kingdom,  which  he  had 
governed  fourteen  years,  to  Ceolwulf,  brother  of  King 
Kenred,  who  had  reigned  before  him.  Ceolwulf  filled  the 
throne  eight  years.  It  was  for  this  king  that  Bede,  that 
holy  and  venerable  saint,  a  man  of  cultivated  genius,  and  a 
Christian  philosopher,  wrote  the  Ecclesiastical  History  of 
the  En^sh,  with  what  advantage  to  the  king  his  happy  end 
shows. 

[a.d.  731.]  In  the  fifth  year  of  Etiielward's  reign  Berth- 
wald,  who  had  been  ardibishop^  nearly  88  years,  de- 
parted this  life,  and  Tatwine,  who  had  been  a  priest  at 
Bredune^  in  Mercia,  was  appointed  archbishop.  He  was 
consecrated  by  those  prelates  of  blessed  memory,  Ing- 
wald,  bishop  of  London;  Daniel,  bishop  oi  Winchester; 
Aldulf,  bishop  of  Eochester ;  and  Aldwin,  bishop  of  Litch- 
field. Two  years  afterwards,  Ethelbald,  the  very  powerful 
king  of  Mercia,  assembling  a  formidable  army,  besieged 
Sumerton^,  investing  it  witii  camps  formed  all  round,  and  asf. 
there  was  no  force  to  throw  in  succours  to  the  besieged, 
and  it  was  impossible  to  hold  out  against  the  besiegers,  the 
place  was  surrendered  to  the  king.  Ethelward,  indeed,  who 
was  distinguished  by  his  great  qualities  above  all  the  con- 
temporary kings,  resolved  to  reduce  all  the  provinces  of 
England,  as  £Bur  as  the  river  Humber,  with  their  respective 

1  The  important  battk  of  Toan,  in  which  Charles  Martel  defeated  the 
Arabi  of  Spain,  and  delivered  Western  Europe  from  that  desolating  scourge, 
was  fought  A.i>.  732.  Bede  closed  his  History  with  the  year  731,  in  the 
reign  of  Ceolwulf,  king  of  Northumberland,  to  whom  it  was  dedicated.  The 
reference,  therefore,  to  the  victory  of  Charles  Martel,  in  782,  must  have  be^i 
either  an  interpolation,  or  an  addition  made  by  the  author  after  the  conclu- 
sion of  his  History ;  which  latter  is  probable,  as  Bede  snrriTed  till  735,  or, 
according  to  the  computation  of  the  &LXon  Chrsoicle,  784. 

*  Of  Canterbury. 

3  A  monastery  near  the  Breedon  Hills,  Worcesteahire. 

*  Somerton,  in  Somersetshire. 


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124  HENET  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  IV. 

kings,  which  he  accomplished.     There  was  an  eclipse  of 
the  sun  the  same  year. 

In  the  eighth  year  of  Ethelward,  Archbishop  Tatwine,  a 
prelate  of  exemplary  piety  and  wisdom,  eminently  versed  in 
sacred  Uterature,  was  taken  from  among  men.  Egbert^  was 
raised  to  the  vacant  dignity,  and  received  the  pallium  from 
Kome.  The  same  year,  Venerable  Bede  was  raised  to  the 
heavenly  mansions,  where  his  heart  had  always  dwelt.  This 
great  man,  who,  with  royal  virtue,  held  the  reins  over  his 
own  evil  propensities  and  those  of  others,  was  not  inferior 
even  to  kings,  and  therefore  may  most  worthily  be  esteemed 
a  king,  and  placed  in  the  ranks  of  kings. 

Bede,  a  priest  of  the  monastery  at  Wiremundham  and 
Ingurvus  ^,  having  been  educated  and  brought  up  by  Bene- 
dict, abbot  of  that  place,  and  his  successor  Ceolfrid,  con- 
tinually devoted  himself  to  the  study  of  the  Scriptures.  He 
was  taJien  from  the  world  in  the  sixty-second  year  of  his 
age,  mature  in  years  and  in  wisdom.  Ml  of  days  not  spent 
in  vain,  as  appears  by  the  nmnber  of  his  works.  Amongst 
these  he  composed  three  books  of  commentaries,  from  fiie 
beginning  of  Genesis  to  the  birth  of  Isaac;  three  books 
concerning  the  tabernacle,  its  vessels  and  vestments ;  four 
books  on  the  early  part  of  Samuel  to  the  death  of  Saul ; 
two  books  in  which  he  treated  allegorically  of  the  building 
of  the  Temple ;  a  book  containing  30  questions  out  of  the 
Books  of  Kings  ;  three  books  on  tiie  Proverbs  of  Solomon ; 
three  on  the  Canticles ;  two  books  of  HomiUes  on  the 
Gospels ;  three  on  Esdra  and  Nehemiah ;  one  on  the 
Prophecy  of  Habakkuk ;  one  on  the  Book  of  Tobias ;  a  col- 
lection of  Lessons  from  the  Old  Testament;  four  on  the 
Gospel  of  St.  Mark ;  two  on  St.  Luke.  Whatever  he  found 
in  the  minor  works  of  St.  Augustine,  concerning  the  apostle, 
he  transcribed  in  order;  two  books  on  the  Acts  of  the 
Apostles ;  seven  books  on  the  Seven  Apostolical  Epistles ; 
three  on  the  Apocalypse;  also  chapters  of  Lessons  from 
the  New  Testament,  except  the  Gospels ;  also  a  book  of 

'  Henry  of  Huntingdon  here  makes  two  mistakes.  Egbert  mis  made 
archbishop  of  York  the  same  year  that  Tatwine  died  [a.d.  734],  and  re- 
ceived the  pallium  the  year  following.  Nothelm  succeeded  Tatwine  in  the 
see  of  Canterbury,  receiving  the  pall  in  a.d.  736. — See  Sax,  Ckran, 

•  Or  *'  In  Guroum."  Jarrow. 


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A.D.  734.]        VENEBABLE  BEDE's  WORKS.  125 

Epistles  to  various  persons ;  also  a  book  on  the  Histories 
of  the  Saints;  also  on  the  Life  of  St.  Cuthbert,  first  in 
heroic  verse,  afterwards  in  prose ;  two  books  also  of  the 
lives  of  the  Abbots  of  his  own  Monastery ;  also  a  Martyro- 
logy;  also  a  book  of  Hymns;  also  a  book  concerning 
Times ;  also  a  book  on  the  Art  of  Poetry ;  and  lastly,  the 
Ecclesiastical  History  of  the  English,  in  ^\e  books,  in  the 
conclusion  of  which  he  devoutly  entreats  that  he  may  have 
the  benefit  of  the  prayers  of  aU  who  read  it. 

Concerning  the  state  of  ecclesiastical  affairs  in  his  time,, 
Bede  thus  speaks^:  "At  this  time,  Tatwine  is  archbishop 
of  Canterbury;  Aldulf,  bishop  of  Kochester;  Ingwald, 
bishop  of  London ;  Aldbert  and  Hadulao  preside  as  bishops 
over  the  East-Angles ;  Daniel  and  Forthere  are  bishops  in 
the  province  of  the  West-Saxons^;  Aldwin  is  bishop  in 
Mercia  ^ ;  over  the  people  who  live  to  the  west  of  the  river 
Severn,  Walstod  is  bishop^;  in  the  province  of  the  Huiccii, 
Wilfiid  is  bishop  ^ ;  in  the  province  of  Lindsey,  Cimebert^ ; 
the  Isle  of  Wight  belongs  to  Daniel,  bishop  of  Winchester^ 
and  he  administers  the  province  of  the  South-Saxons^ 
which  has  been  for  some  years  without  a  bishop  of  its  own'. 
Subject  to  the  King  Ceolwulf  there  are  four  bishops,  Wilfrid, 
of  York ;  Ethelwald,  of  Lindisfame;  Acca,  of  Haugulstad^; 
Pecthelm,  of  *  Candida  Casa,'^  in  which  newly- erected  see- 
he  is  the  first  bishop. 

"  Moreover,  Eadbert  is  king  of  Kent ;  Ethelward,  king  of 
Wessex ;  Selred,  king  of  the  East-Angles  ^^ ;  Ceolwulf,  king 
of  Northumbria ;  and  Ethelbald,  king  of  Mercia,  who  is  the 
greatest  of  them  all.  Such  is  the  state  of  affairs  in  the 
year  smce  the  coming  over  of  the  English  about  the  388th ; 

*  Eccles.  Hist.,  book  v.  c.  23. 

3  The  one  having  his  seat  at  Winchester,  the  other  at  Sherborne. 
3  At  Litchfield.  *  The  see  of  Hereford. 

*  As  to  the  Huiccii,  see  note,  p.  80.  Worcester  was  the  seat  of  thiff 
bishopric.  •  Sidnacester. 

'  The  original  seat  of  the  bishops  of  the  South-Saxons  was  at'Selsey, 
which  was  then  vacant. 

•  Hexham. 

•  Whitherne,  where  indeed  St.  Ninius  founded  a  bishopric  among  the 
Picts,  A.D.  412 ;  but  Pecthelm  was  the  first  Saxon  bishop. 

*®  Selred  was  king  of  the  East-Saxons.  Flor.  of  Wore.  He  succeeded 
Ina. 


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126  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK   IV. 

in  the  784th  year  of  the  incarnation  (^  our  Lord^,  in  whose 
never-ending  reign  let  the  earth  rejoice,  and  Britain  being 
united  with  them  in  the  joys  of  the  true  faith,  *  let  the  mul- 
titude of  the  isles  be  glad,  and  rejoice  in  remembrance  ci 
his  holiness !  *" 

Thus  far  I  have  relied  on  the  authorify  of  Venerable 
Bede,  the  priest,  in  weaving  the  thread  of  this  my  history, 
but  chiefly  in  all  those  passages  in  which  I  have  treated  of 
ecclesiastical  affaire,  and  in  otiber  matters  also  as  much  as  I 
could.  Henceforth,  it  will  be  my  endeavour  to  commit  to 
writing,  for  the  instruction  of  posterity,  whatever  I  have 
been  able  to  find ,  by  diligent  inquiry  coUected  in  the  works 
of  old  authors ;  for,  as  oar  learned  Bede  asserts,  in  the 
preface  to  his  Histcw^  of  the  En^ish,  "  The  true  rule  of 
history  is  to  commit  to  writing  with  simplicity,  for  the 
instruction  of  posterity,  what  is  gathered  frcmi  common 
report." 

[A.D.  7S6.]  In  the  t^ith  year  of  King  Ethelward,  Nothelm, 
the  archbidiop,  received  the  pallium  from  the  Pc^e.  Not 
long  afterwards,  Forthere,  the  bishop^,  and  the  queen 
Frithogitha,  leaving  her  splendid  possessions  and  luziuious 
pleasures,  went  to  Boma  In  those  times  very  many  of  the 
English  nation,  both  nobles  and  common  people,  clerks 
and  laymen,  men  and  women,  vied  with  each  other  in  so 
doing.  The  same  year  Ethelwald,  bishop  of  lindisfame, 
departed  this  hfe,  smd  Conwulf  was  advanced  to  the  episcopal 
dignity.  Not  later,  the  venerable  Acca,  priest  and  afterwards 
bishop  <^  Haugulstad,  put  off  this  mortal  coil. 

In  the  eleventh  year  of  King  Ethelward,  Ceolwulf,  the 
most  illustrious  king  of  Northumbria,  performed  a  most 


1  Henry  of  HimtingdoB  alters  tliis  date  in  Bede,  which  are  An.  285  of 
the  Saxon  era,  and  731  of  the  Christian.  This  error  is  the  more  extra- 
ordinary, as  he  is  here  quoting  verbatim  from  Bede's  History  ;  and  as  Bede 
died  in  734,  ho  could  hsurdly  have  brought  up  his  history  to,  and  dated  it  in 
that  year.  Henry  of  Huntingdon  had  the  Saxon  Chronicle  befoi5e  him^  which 
gives  this  date;  and  he  himself  places  the  death  of  Bede  in  the  eightlk 
year  of  King  Ethelward,  which  coincides  with  a.d.  733,  or  734.  I  per- 
ceive that  Dr.  Giles,  on  the  authority  of  Cuthbert's  letter,  gives  the  death  of 
Bede  in  735.— See  his  life  of  Bede,  prefixed  to  the  History,  in  £okn*8 
JEdition,  p.  21. 

«  Of  Winchester. 


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A.D.  737.]  ceolwulf's  piety.  127 

memorable  deed.  Now  Ceolwulf  was  son  of  Cutha,  son  of 
Cuthwin,  son  of  Ledwold^  son  of  Egwold,  son  of  Aldelm, 
son  of  Oeche,  son  erf  King  Ida.  Ceolwulf,  then,  who  fre- 
quently conversed  with  Bede  while  he  was  yet  living,  and 
(rften  studied,  both  before  and  after  the  death  of  Bede, 
the  History  which  he  had  dedicated  to  him,  began  to 
ponder  with  himself  diligently  on  the  lives  and  deaths  of 
various  kings.  He  saw,  as  clear  as  light,  that  earthly  king- 
doms and  worldly  possessions  are  gained  with  toil,  are  pos- 
sessed in  fear,  are  lost  with  regret.  And  while,  to  persons 
of  inferior  judgment  and  less  experience,  it  might  appear 
foolish  and  irrational,  seeing  how  feir  and  deli^tfiil  worldly 
things  are,  to  be  told  that  these  must  be  relinquished  and 
despised,  not  yet  understanding  how  disquieting  is  iMs 
world's  wealth,  how  it  comes  to  an  end,  producing  no  fruits 
but  a  late  repentance,  yet  no  temptations  entangled  the 
wise  and  experienced  Idng.  He  felt  within  himself  that  his 
royal  power  had  been  established  with  difficulty,  and  was 
maintained  in  fear,  while  he  was  unwilling  to  lose  it  in 
s<»row.  As  the  Iwd,  therefore,  and  not  the  slave  of  his 
high  estate,  he  magnanimously  cast  from  him  what  he 
considered  worthless.  Especially  he  was  excited  by  the 
thought,  that  while  women  and  boys,  and  even  the  better 
sort,  thronged  to  behold  him  and  admire  his  grandeur,  he 
himself  was  inwardly  tormented  with  horrible  fears  of 
murder  and  treason,  by  which  he  was  consumed  bolii  in 
mind  and  body;  so  that  while  others  counted  him  most 
fortunate,  he,  who  alone  knew  the  secrets  of  his  heart, 
esteemed  himself  most  wretched.  When,  then,  his  reign 
had  lasted  a  short  period,  that  is,  eight  years,  it  became 
very  evident  to  him,  and  he  bitteriy  lamented,  that  for  such 
an  interval  he  had  wasted  his  life  in  vain  cares  and  frivolous 
pursuits,  and  he  resolved  to  dedicate  at  least  the  rest  of  his 
days,  not  to  mistaken  folly,  but  to  wisdom  and  his  own  best 
interests.  Imitating,  therefore,  the  examples  he  found  in 
the  History  of  the  holy  man  just  named,  this  truly  illus- 
trious king  followed  in  the  track  of  six  illustrious  kings. 
These  were  Ethelred,  king  of  Mercia,  and  Kenred,  his  suc- 
cessor ;  Ceadwall,  king  of  Wessex,  and  Ina,  his  successor ; 
as  also  Sigebert,  king  of  East-Anglia,  who  became  a  monk, 
and  was  afterwards  killed  by  Penda ;  with  Sebbi,  king  of 


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138  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [©OOK  IV. 

Essex,  who,  also  becoming  a  monk,  foresaw  with  joy  the  day 
of  his  death — *'  he  saw  it,  and  was  glad ! "  They  wasted  not 
their  substance  with  harlots,  but  spent  their  days  in  tribu- 
lation, sowing  good  seed,  that  they  might  come  again  with 
joy,  and  bring  their  sheaves  with  them,  an  offering  to  God. 
Accordingly,  Ceolwulf  filled  up  the  number  of  seven  perfect 
kings,  and  having  assumed  the  monastic  habit,  the  Lord 
set  a  crown  of  precious  stones  upon  his  head.  He  resigned 
his  throne  to  Edbert,  who  was  his  kinsman;  for  he  was 
the  son  of  Eata,  the  son  of  Ledwold ;  and  he  reigned  21 
years. 

[a.d.  737.]  Ethelbald,  the  haughty  king  of  the  Mercians, 
a  prince  of  a  different  character  in  this  royal  fellowship,  and 
therefore  destined  to  a  different  end,  despising  holiness,  and 
setting  might  above  right,  invaded  Northumbria,  where,  meet- 
ing with  no  resistance,  he  swept  away  as  much  booty  as  he 
could  transport  w.ith  him  to  his  own  country. 

[a.d.  741.]  King  Ethelward  died  in  the  fourteenth  year  of 
his  reign,  and  Cuthred,  his  kinsmau,  who  succeeded  him, 
reigned  over  Wessex  sixteen  years.  Meanwhile,  the  proud 
king  Ethelbald  continually  harassed  him,  sometimes  by  in- 
surrections, sometimes  by  wars.  Fortune  was  changeable ; 
the  events  of  hostilities  were,  with  various  results,  now 
favourable  to  the  one,  then  to  the  other.  At  one  time 
peace  was  declared  between  them,  but  it  lasted  but  for 
a  short  interval,  when  war  broke  out  afresh.  The  same 
year^  Egbert  was  consecrated  archbishop,  during  the  pon- 
tificate of  Zachary,  and  Dun  was  ordained  to  Sie  see  of 
Kochester. 

[a.d.  743.]  In  the  fourth  year  of  his  reign,  Cuthred  joined 
his  forces  with  those  of  Ethelbald,  king  of  Mercia,  with  whom 
he  was  then  at  peace,  against  the  Britons,  who  were  assem- 
bled in  immense  multitudes.  But  these  warlike  kings, 
with  their  splendid  army,  falling  on  the  enemy's  ranks  on 
different  points,  in  a  sort  of  rivalry  and  contest  which 
should  be  foremost,  the  Britons,  imable  to  sustain  the  brunt 
of  such  an  attack,  betook  themselves  to  flight,  offering  their 
backs  to  the  swords  of  the  enemy,  and  the  spoils  to  those 

^  That  is,  the  year  of  Cuthred's  accession.  For  "  Egbert,"  read  Cuthbert, 
according  to  the  Saxon  Chronicle.  He  was  Archbishop  of  Canterbury,  suc- 
ceeding Nothelm. 


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A.D.  743-752.]  cutheed's  reign  in  wessex.  129 

who  pursued  them.  The  victorious  kings,  returning  to 
their  own  States,  were  received  with  triumphant  rejoicings. 
The  year  following  died  Wilfrid,  who  had  been  bishop 
of  York*  30  years.  That  same  year  [a.d.  744]  there 
was  a  remarkable  appearance  in  the  heavens;  stars  were 
seen  shooting  to  and  fro  in  the  air,  which  seemed  a  pro- 
digy to  all  beholders.  The  year  following  Daniel  de- 
ceased, in  the  forty-third  year  after  he  became  bishop^. 
The  next  year  King  Seldred  was  slain,  as  we  learn  from 
old  writers,  but  they  do  not  tell  us  how  or  by  whom  he 
was  slain. 

[a.d.  748.]  In  the  ninth  year  of  Cuthred,  Kinric,  his  son, 
was  slain,  a  brave  warrior  and  bold  himter,  tender  in  age, 
but  strong  in  arms,  little  in  years,  but  great  in  prowess ;  who, 
while  he  was  following  up  his  successes,  trusting  too  much 
to  the  fortune  of  war,  fell  in  a  mutiny  of  his  soldiers,  suf- 
fering the  punishment  of  his  impatient  temper '*.  The  same 
year  died  Eadbert,  king  of  the  Kentish  men,  who  wore  the 
diadem  22  years. 

[a.d.  750.]  In  the  eleventh  year  of  his  reign  Cuthred 
fought  against  Ethelhim,  a  proud  chief,  who  fomented  a 
rebellion  against  his  sovereign,  and  although  he  was  vastly 
inferior  to  his  lord  in  number  of  troops,  he  held  the 
field  against  him  for  a  long  time  with  a  most  obstinate  re- 
sistance, his  exceeding  caution  supplying  the  deficiency  of 
his  force.  But  when  victory  had  well  nigh  crowned  his 
enterprise,  a  severe  wound,  the  just  judgment  of  his  traitor- 
ous intentions,  caused  the  royal  cause  to  triumph. 

[a.d.  752.]  Cuthred,  in  the  thirteenth  year  of  his  reign, 
being  unable  to  submit  any  longer  to  the  insolent  exactions 
and  the  arrogance  of  King  Ethelbald,  and  preferring  liberty 

^  So  also  the  Saxon  Chronicle  and  Florence  of  "Worcester.  He  is  there 
called  "  Wilfrid  the  Younger ; "  but  "Wilfrid,  bishop  of  Worcester,  is  pro- 
bably meant,  as  Wilfred  II.  of  York  was  succeeded  by  Egbert  in  734. 

^  Daniel  was  Bishop  of  Winchester,  which  see  he  resigned  the  year  be- 
fore his  death. 

*  The  Saxon  Chronicle  states  simply  that  Kinric,  who  is  called  "  the 
Etheling  of  the  West  Saxons,  was  slain."  From  what  source  Henry  of  Hun- 
tingdon gathered  the  particulars  of  his  death,  and  the  traits  of  his  character, 
we  are,  as  in  many  other  instances,  unable  to  discover.  In  this  case,  how- 
ever, there  is  an  air  of  truth  and  genuineness  in  the  story. 


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130  HENBY  OF  HDNTIHGDON.  [bOOK  IT* 

to  the  hope  of  lif^,  encountered  him  at  Bereford^  with 
bannered  legions.  He  was  attended  by  Ethelhim,  the  afore- 
said chief,  with  whom  he  was  now  reconciled,  and,  supported 
by  his  valour  and  counsels,  he  was  able  to  try  the  chances 
of  war.  On  the  other  side,  Ethelbald,  who  was  king  of 
kings,  had  in  his  army  the  Kentish  men,  the  East-Saxons, 
and  the  Angles,  with  a  numerous  host.  The  armies  being 
drawn  up  in  battle  array,  and,  rushing  forward,  having  nearly 
met,  Ethelhun,  who  led  the  West-Saxons,  bearing  the  royal 
standard,  a  golde^  dragon,  transfixed  the  standard-bearer  of 
the  enemy.  Upon  this,  a  shout  arose,  and  the  followers  of 
Cuthred  being  much  encouraged,  battle  was  joined  on  both 
sides.  Then  the  thunder  of  war,  the  clash  of  arms,  the 
dang  of  blows,  and  the  cries  of  the  wounded,  resounded 
terribly,  and  a  desperate  and  most  decisive  battle  began, 
according  to  the  issue  of  which,  either  the  men  of  Wessex, 
or  the  men  of  Mercia,  would  for  many  generations  be  sub- 
ject to  the  victors.  Then  might  be  seen  the  troops  with 
rustling  breastplates  and  pointed  helmets  and  glistening 
spears,  with  emblazoned  standards  shining  with  gold;  but  a 
rfiort  time  afterwards  stained  with  blood,  bespattered  with 
brains,  their  spears  shattered,  and  their  ranks  broken,  a 
horrible  spectacle.  The  bravest  and  boldest  on  both  sides 
gathering  about  their  standards,  rank  rushed  desperately  on 
rank,  dealing  slaughter  with  their  swords  and  Amazonian 
battle-axes.  There  was  no  thought  of  flight,  confidence  in 
victory  was  equal  on  both  sides.  The  arrogance  of  their 
pride  sustained  the  Mercians,  the  fear  of  slavery  kindled 
the  courage  of  the  men  of  Wessex.  But  wherever  the 
chief  before  mentioned  fell  on  the  enemy's  ranks,  there  he 
cleared  a  way  before  him,  his  tremendous  battle-axe  cleaving, 
swift  as  lightning,  both  arms  and  limbs.  On  the  other 
hand,  wherever  the  brave  King  Ethelbald  turned,  the  enemy 
were  slaughtered,  for  his  invincible  sword  rent  armour  as  if 
it  were  a  vestment,  and  bones  as  if  they  were  flesh.  When, 
therefore,  it  happened  that  the  king  and  the  chief  met  each 

*  Burford.  "  This  battle  has  been  much  amplified  by  Henry  of  Hunting- 
don ;  and  after  him  by  Matthew  of  Westminster.  The  fonner,  among  other 
absurdities,  talks  of  Amazonian  battle-axes.  They  both  mention  the  banner 
of  the  golden  dragun,  &c." — Ingram,  note  to  Sax,  Chron. 


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JLD.  763.]  WES8EX  BECOMES   POWEBFUL.  131 

other,  it  was  as  when  two  fires  from  opposite  quarters  con- 
sume all  that  opposes  them.  Each  of  them,  to  excite 
terror  in  the  other,  came  on  with  threatening  mien,  thrust- 
ing forth  the  right  hand,  and  gathering  themselves  up  in 
their  arms  struck  furious  blows,  the  one  against  the  other. 
But  the  God  who  resists  the  proud,  and  from  whom  all  might, 
courage,  and  valour  proceed,  made  an  end  of  his  favour  to 
King  Ethelbald,  and  caused  his  wonted  confidence  to  fail. 
Since  then  he  no  longer  felt  courage  or  strength.  Almighty 
God  inspiring  him  with  terror,  he  was  the  first  to  flee  while 
yet  his  troops  continued  to  fight.  Nor  from  that  day  to  the 
day  of  his  death  was  anything  prosperous  permitted  by 
divine  Providence  to  happen  to  him.  Indeed,  four  years 
afterwards,  in  another  battle  at  Secandune  S  in  which  the 
cam£^e  was  wonderful,  disdaining  to  flee,  he  was  slain  on 
the  field,  and  was  buried  at  Ripon.  So  this  very  powerful 
king  paid  the  penalty  of  his  inordinate  pride,  after  a  reign 
of  41  years.  From  that  time  the  kingdom  of  Wessex  was 
firmly  established,  and  ceased  not  continually  to  grow  pre- 
eminent. 

[a.d.  753.]  In  the  fourteenth  year  of  his  reign,  Cuthred 
fought  against  the  Britons,  who,  being  unable  to  withstand 
the  conqueror  of  King  Ethelbald,  soon  took  to  flight  and 
justly  suffered  a  severe  defeat  without  any  loss  to  their 
enemy.  The  year  following,  Guthred,  this  great  and  power- 
"  fill  king,  after  a  prosperous  and  victorious  career,  ended  his 
glory  in  death. 

Sigebert,  a  kinsman  of  the  late  king's,  succeeded  him  on 
the  throne,  but  he  held  it  only  for  a  short  time.  For  his 
pride  and  arrogance  on  account  of  the  successes  of  his  pre- 
decessors became  intolerable  even  to  his  friends.  But  when 
he  evil-entreated  his  people  in  every  way,  perverting  the 
laws  for  his  own  advantage  or  evading  them  for  his  own 
purposes,  Cumbra,  the  noblest  of  his  ministers  ^  at  the 
entreaty  of  the  whole  people,  made  their  complaints  known 
to  the  inhuman  king,  counselling  him  to  rule  his  subjects 
with  greater  leniency,  and,  abating  his  cruelty,  to  be  more 
amiable  in  the  sight  of  God  and  man.     For  this  counsel 

'  Saxon  Chronicle,  "  Seckington,"  Warwickshire  t 
^  "  Consul/'  Henry  of  Huntingdon  ;  "  Earldorraan,"  Saxon  Chronicle. 

E  2 


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132  HENBY  OP  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  IV. 

the  king  most  unrighteously  put  him  to  death,  and,  be- 
coming still  more  inhuman  and  insupportable,  his  tyranny 
increased. 

[a.d.  755.]  In  the  beginning  of  the  second  year  of  King 
Sigebert's  reign,  when  his  pride  and  wickedness  appeared 
incorrigible,  tiie  nobles  and  people  of  the  whole  kingdom 
assembled,  and,  after  a  careful  deliberation,  he  was  by 
unanimous  consent  expelled  from  the  throne.  Cynewulf, 
an  illustrious  youth  of  the  royal  race  ^,  was  elected  king. 
Upon  which,  Sigebert,  driven  from  his  States,  and  fearing  no 
less  than  he  deserved,  fled  into  the  great  wood  called  An- 
dredeswald^  where  he  concealed  himself.  There,  a  swine- 
herd of  Cumbra,  the  ealdorman,  whom  he  had  iniquitously 
put  to  death,  as  I  before  mentioned,  foimd  the  king  lying 
in  concealment,  and,  recognising  him,  slew  him  on  the 
spot  in  revenge  for  his  master's  death.  Behold  the  just 
judgment  of  the  Lord !  See  how  his  justice  recompenses 
men  according  to  their  deserts,  not  only  in  the  world  to 
come,  but  even  in  this  life !  Raising  up  wicked  kings  for 
the  merited  chastisement  of  their  subjects,  one  is  permitted 
to  continue  long  in  his  mad  career,  liiat  a  depraved  people 
may  be  the  longer  oppressed,  and  the  king,  becoming  still 
more  depraved,  may  be  more  severely  tormented  hereafter, 
as  in  the  case  of  Ethelbald,  the  king  of  Mercia,  lately  spoken 
of;  another,  Providence  visits  with  swift  destruction,  to  give 
room  to  breathe  for  the  people  ground  down  by  his  tyranny, 
and  that  they  may  not  quickly  incur,  through  the  unbridled 
wickedness  of  their  prince,  the  just  doom  of  eternal  retri- 
bution, as  in  the  case  of  this  Sigebert,  of  whom  we  are  now 
speaking.  As  for  him,  indeed,  the  greater  his  crimes,  the 
lower  he  sunk  in  his  punishment,  which  was  inflicted  by 
the  hand  of  a  vile  swineherd,  being  plunged  from  a  depth 

*  The  Etheling,  or  heir  apparent. 

'  And  redes- wald,  now  the  Weald  of  Sussex.  The  account  giyen  by  the 
Saxon  Chronicle,  though  shorter,  is  more  graphic  and  precise.  It  tells  us 
that  "  Cynewulf  and  the  West-Saxon  *  Witan  *  depriyed  his  kinsman  Sige- 
bert of  his  kingdom,  except  Hampshire,  for  his  unjust  doings ;  and  that  he 
held,  until  he  slew  the  Ealdorman,  who  longest  abode  by  him.  And  then 
Cynewulf  drove  him  into  Andred,  and  he  abode  there  until  a  swineherd 
stabbed  him  at  Privets-flood  [Privett,  Hampshire],  and  avenged  the  Ealdor- 
man Cumbra."  The  Archdeacon  of  Huntingdon  would  have  done  better  if 
he  had  given  the  details  with  more  precision,  and  spared  us  the  homily. 


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A.D.  755.]  OFFA,   KING  OF  MERCIA.  .  133 

of  woe,  to  woe  still  deeper.  Wherefore,  to  the  eternal 
justice  of  God  be  praise  and  glory,  now  and  ever !     Amen. 

[a.d.  755.]  In  the  first  year  of  King  Cynewnlf,  Beornred 
succeeded  Ethelbald  in  the  kingdom  of  Mercia ;  but  his 
reign  was  short.  Foj^Offa  dethroned  him  the  same  year, 
and  filled  the  throne  of  Mercia  39  years.  He  was  a 
youth  of  the  noblest  extraction,  being  the  son  of  Thing- 
ferth,  who  was  son  of  Eanwulf,  who  was  son  of  Osmod,  the 
son  of  EpaS  the  son  of  Wippa^,  the  son  of  Creoda,  the  son 
of  Cynewald,  the  son  of  Cnebba,  the  son  of  Icel,  the  son  of 
JHomser,  the  son  of  Ageltheow,  the  son  of  Offa,  the  son  of 
Weremund,  the  son  of  Withlseg,  the  son  of  Woden.  Offa 
proved  a  most  warlike  king,  for  he  was  victorious  in  succes- 
sive battles  over  the  men  of  Kent,  and  the  men  of  Wessex, 
and  the  Northumbrians.  He  was  also  a  very  religious  man, 
for  he  traaslated  the  bones  of  St.  Alban  to  the  monastery 
which  he  had  built  and  endowed  with  many  gifts.  He  also 
granted  to  the  successor  of  St.  Peter,  the  Eoman  pontiff,  a 
fixed  tax  for  every  house  in  his  kingdom  for  ever. 

In  the  third  year  of  King  Cynewulf,  Eadbert,  king  of 
Northumbria,  reflecting  on  the  troubled  Uves  and  the  un- 
happy deaths  of  the  kings  before  named,  Ethelbald  and 
Sigebert,  and  on  the  meritorious  life  and  the  glorious  end 
of  hie  predecessor  Ceolwulf,  he  chose  the  better  part  which 
shall  not  be  taken  away  from  him.  For,  resigning  his 
crown,  he  submitted  to  the  tonsiu:e  which  would  secure  to 
him  an  everlasting  diadem,  and  put  on  the  black  gown 
which  would  be  turned  into  a  robe  of  celestial  splendour. 
He  makes  the  eighth  of  the  kings  who  voluntarily  abdicated 
their  kingdoms  for  the  sake  of  Christ ;  nay  rather,  to  speak 
more  correctly,  exchanged  them  for  an  everlasting  kingdom ; 
in  tlie  blessedness  of  which  eight  kings  joy  without  end 
exults  in  manifold  and  unspeakable  delights,  while  it  is 
most  blessed  to  imitate  their  determination.  Eadbert  was 
succeeded  by  his  son  Oswulph,  who  only  reigned  one  year, 
being  treacherously  murdered  by  his  own  household.  Moll 
Ethelwald,  his  successor,  reigned  six  years.  About  this  time 
Cuthbeit  the  archbishop^  died. 

[a.d.  760.]     Ethelbert,   the  Kentish  king,   attained  the 

>  Eawa;  Pybba;  Sax.  Chron.  »  Of  Canterbury. 

Digitized  by  LjOOQIC 


184  HENEY   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  IV. 

term  of  life  in  the  sixth  year  of  the  reign  of  Cynewnlf. 
The  same  year  Ceolwulf,  formerly  king,  but  now  a  monk, 
died,  or  rather  was  translated  to  the  fruition  of  his  un- 
speakable reward.  The  following  year,  Moll,  king  of  North- 
umbria,  slew  at  Edwins-cliflF,  Oswin,^^e  most  powerful  of 
his  nobles,  who,  rebelling  against  his  sovereign,  in  contempt 
of  the  law  of  nations,  was  justly  punished  according  to  the 
law  of  God.  The  year  afterwards  Lambert  was  ordained 
archbishop  of  York^;  and  Frith wald,  bishop  of  Whitheme, 
who  had  been  consecrated  in  the  sixth  year  of  the  reign  of 
Ceolwulf,  ended  his  days.  At  ihe  same  time,  Petwin  was 
made  bishop  of  Whitheme.  Alchred  succeeded  to  the  king- 
dom of  Northumbria  on  the  demise  of  Moll,  in  the  sixtih 
yefar  of  his  reign,  and  held  it  eight  years.  In  his  second 
year,  Egbert,  archbishop  of  York,  died,  who  had  been  arch- 
bishop 36  years,  and  Frithbert,  bishop  of  Hexham,  in 
the  thirty-fourth  year  of  his  episcopate.  Ethelbert  suc- 
ceeded Egbert  in  the  archdiocese,  and  Alcmund  obtained 
Frithbert 's  bishopric.  In  the  fourth  year  of  King  Alchred, 
died  Pepin,  king  of  the  Franks,  and  Stephen,  pope  of  Kome, 
as  well  as  Eadbert,  the  son  of  Eata,  the  most  illustrious 
of  the  English  nobles. 

In  the  year  of  our  Lord  769,  the  fifteenth  of  the  reign  of 
Cynewulf,  the  operations  of  the  right  hand  of  the  Most 
High  began  to  change ;  for  the  Roman  Empire,  the  summit 
of  power  for  so  many  years,  became  subject  to  Charlemagne, 
king  of  the  Franks,  after  the  thirtieth  year  of  his  reign, 
which  commenced  this  year^,  and  has  continued  in  the  Ime 
of  his  posterity  from  his  time  to  the  present  day. 

[a.d.  773.]  In  the  twentieth  year  of  the  reign  of  Gyne- 
wulf,  King  Offa  fought  a  battle  with  the  Kentish  men  at 
Ottanford  *,  in  which,  after  a  dreadful  slaughter  on  both 

*  Henry  of  Huntingdon  calls  him  "  Jambeth,"  bishop  of  "  Ceastre."  It 
should  have  been  Archbishop  of  Canterbury  in  the  place  of  Bregowin,  who, 
A.D.  759,  succeeded  Cuthbert — See  Sax.  Chron,  Henry  of  Huntingdon 
confuses  Lambert  with  Frithwald,  bishop  of  Whitheme,  the  Scottish  diocese, 
who  also  died  this  year,  having  been  consecrated  long  before  at ''  Oeastre/' 
meaning  York. 

^  Charlemagne  succeeded  Pepin  in  the  kingdom  of  the  Franks,  A.D.  768, 
became  king  of  Lombardy  in  774,  and  was  crowned  emperor  of  Borne 
A.D.  800. 

3  Or  Orford,  in  Kent     One  MS.  reads  "  Oxenfdrd,"  Oxford. 


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A.D.  777.]  OFFA*S  BEIGN.  135 

sides,  Oflfa  gained  the  honour  of  victory.  The  same  year 
the  Northumbrians  drove  their  King  Alchred  from  Eoverwic 
[York]  in  the  Paschal  week,  electing  as  their  king,  Ethelred, 
the  son  of  Moll,  who  reigned  four  years.  The  same  year 
red  signs  appeared  in  the  heavens  after  sunset  ^  and  horrible 
snakes  were  seen  in  Sussex,  to  the  wonder  of  all.  Two 
years  afterwards,  the  Old-Saxons,  from  whom  the  English 
nation  is  descended,  were  converted  to  Christianity:  the 
same  year,  Petwin,  bishop  of  Whitheme,  died,  in  the  twenty- 
fourth  year  of  his  episcopate. 

[a.d.  777.]  In  the  twenty-fourth  year  of  his  reign.  King 
Cynewulf  fought  against  Offa  round  Benetune^ ;  but  by  the 
fortune  of  war  he  was  worsted  and  evacuated  the  town,  so 
that  Offa  took  the  castle.  The  same  year  Ethelbert  was 
consecrated  at  York,  bishop  of  Whitheme.  The  following 
year  Ethelbald  and  Herbert,  officers*'  of  the  King  of  North- 
umbria,  rebelling  against  their  master,  slew  Aldulf  the  son 
of  Bosa,  the  commander-in-chief  of  the  royal  army,  in  a 
battle  at  Kings-cliff,  and  afterwards  the  officers  above 
named  slew  Cynewulf  and  Eggan,  also  royal  officers,  in  a 
great  battle  at  Hela-thym.  The  King  Ethelred,  losing  toge- 
Qier  his  officers  and  his  hopes,  fled  from  the  face  of  tiie 
rebels ;  upon  which  they  raised  Alfwold  to  the  throne,  and 
he  reigned  ten  years.  The  year  following*,  the  chief  men 
and  governors  of  Northumbria  burnt  a  certain  justiciary  and 
chief  officer'  for  unjust  severity.  The  same  year,  archbishop 
Edbert^  died  at  York,  and  was  succeeded  by  Eanbald.  That 
year  also  Kinebold  was  made  bishop  of  Lindisfame,  and  the 
Old-Saxons  and  Franks  fought  a  battle,  in  which  the  Franks 
conquered.  The  year  following,  Alfwold  king  of  Northiun- 
bria,  sent  to  Kome  for  a  pall,  which  he  delivered  to  Eanbald 
the  archbishop.  Then,  on  the  death  of  Alchmund,  bishop 
of  Hexham,  he  was  succeeded  by  Tilberht.    The  same  year 

'  The  Saxon  Chronicle  calls  this  appearance  "  a  fiery  crucifix." 

*  **  Bensington/'  Saxon  Chronicle ;  Benson,  Oxfordshire.  This  battle  was 
fought  in  the  twenty-second  year  of  Cynewulf's  reign. 

'  Henry  of  Huntingdon  calls  them  "  duces;"  the  Saxon  Chronicle,  "high- 
grieves,"  or  sheriffs,  i.  e.  shire-grieves,  stewardjB  of  the  shire.  The  date  there 
u  A.D.  778 

*  Saxon  Chronicle  dates  it  in  780. 

•  Saxon  Chronicle,  "  ealdorman." 

•  It  should  be  "  Ethelbert." 


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136  HENRY  OF   HUNTIKGDON.  [BOOK  IV. 

Charlemagne  was  at  Borne ;   and  about  this  tune  there  was 
a  synod  at  Acle^. 

[a.d.  784.]  After  Cynewulf  had- been  kmg  26  years ^ 
and  had  fought  many  battles  against  the  Britons  [Welsh], 
in  which  he  was  always  victorious,  subduing  tliem  in  every 
quarter,  he  took  it  into  his  head  to  banish  a  young  man  '  [the 
Etheling]  named  Cyneard,  Sigebert's  brother.  But  he  beset 
the  king  at  Merton,  where  he  had  gone  privately  to  visit  a 
certain  woman  [a.d.  786].  On  the  first  alarm,  the  king  went 
to  the  door,  where  he  manfully  defended  himself,  till  re- 
cognising the  Etheling,  he  rushed  forth  and  wounded  him ; 
but  the  whole  band  of  his  followers  siuroimded  the  king 
and  slew  him.  Cries  being  raised,  the  king's  thanes^  who 
were  in  the  town  ran  to  the  spot,  and,  refusing  the  offers  of 
lands  and  money  made  by  the  Etheling,  fought  with  him 
till  they  were  all  killed  except  one,  a  British  hostage,  who 
was  desperately  wounded.  The  next  morning  the  king's 
thanes  of  the  neigbourhood  beset  the  Etheling  and  his 
party  in  the  house  where  the  king  was  slain.  Upon  which 
he  said  to  them,  "  Your  kindred  are  with  me,  and  I  will 
bestow  on  you  land  and  money,  as  much  as  you  desire,  if 

'  Acley,  in  Durham. 

^  The  Saxon  Chronicle  says  "  about  one-and-thirty  years."  Henry  of 
Huntingdon,  as  Petrie  remarks,  gives  the  date  of  Cynewulf *s  accession  cor- 
rectly, A.D.  755  ;  but  he  considers  that  our  historian  has  fixed  a  wrong  date 
for  his  death,  by  confusing  his  calculation  of  the  intermediate  years.  It 
appears,  however,  to  have  escaped  the  observation  of  the  learned  editor 
that  Henry  of  Huntingdon  himself,  in  the  latter  part  of  this  same  paragraph, 
expressly  states  that  the  reign  of  Cynewulf  lasted  31  years,  in  agree- 
ment  with  the  Saxon  Chronicle.  The  reading,  therefore,  which  gives  the 
twenty-sixth  year  as  the  date  of  Cynewulf 's  death,  must  either  be  a  mere 
inadvertence,  or  an  error  of  the  transcribers  of  the  MSS. ;  unless,  as  the 
sense  seems  to  allow,  the  latter  era  applies  to  thp  termination  of  this  king's 
wars  with  the  Britons,  or  to  his  banishment  of  the  Etheling ;  the  latter  nou- 
rishing his  revenge  for  five  years,  till  he  had  an  opportunity  of  fatally  taking 
it. — See  note,  p.  731  of  Petrie  s  Monumenta  Historica.  It  may  be  ob- 
served, however,  that  the  Saxon  Chronicle  places  the  death  of  Cynewulf  in 
784,  while  31  years  firom  755  would  make  it  786.  Perhaps  he  was  not 
called  to  the  throne  for  some  time  after  Sigebert  was  expelled. 

^  Henry  of  Huntingdon  calls  him  "  Juvenis,"  unmeaningly.  The  Saxon 
Chronicle,  *'  The  Etheling."  Matthew  of  Westminster  says,  that  Cynewulf 
suspected  Cyneard  of  aspiring  to  the  kingdom,  or  revenging  his  brother's 
death. 

*  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  "  milites ; "  Saxon  Chronicle,  "  theigns." 


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A.D.  784.]  BERTBIC   SUCCEEDS  IN  WESSEX.  137 

you  will  not  fight  against  me ;  the  same  offer  I  made  to 
your  friends,  but  they  rejected  it  and  all  perished."  They 
replied  that  no  money  was  dearer  to  them  than  their  lord, 
and  that  they  would  avenge  him  and  their  kinsman.  Then 
after  a  severe  struggle,  they  burst  in  through  the  gate, 
and  slew  the  Etheling  and  84  persons,  his  followers, 
with  him.  One  only  survived,  a  young  lad,  but  he  was 
wounded^.  Cynewulf,  who  was  slain  in  Sie  thirty-first  year 
of  his  reign,  was  buried  at  Winchester,  and  the  Etheling  at 
Axminster. 

Bertric,  who  was  of  the  race  of  Cerdic,  often  mentioned, 
succeeded  Cynewulf  in  the  kingdom  of  Wessex,  over  which 
he  reigned  sixteen  years.  In  his  second  year  Pope  Adrian 
sent  legates  to  Britain  to  renew  the  faith  which  Augustine 
had  preached.  They  were  honourably  received  by  the 
kings  and  people,  and  established  it  on  a  sound  foundation, 
the  grace  of  God  happily  aiding  them.  They  held  a  synod 
at  Chalk-hythe,  at  which  Lambert^  gave  up  some  portion 
of  his  bishopric,  and  Higbert  was  elected  by  King  Offa. 
The  same  year  Egfert  was  consecrated  king  of  a  province 
of  Kent^.  The  year  following,  being  the  year  of  grace  786, 
men's  garments  bore  the  appearance  of  being  marked  with 
the  cross ;  a  prodigy  which  must  appear  wonderful  in  the 
sight  and  hearing  of  all  ages.  "Whether  it  prefigured  the 
crusade  to  Jerusalem,  which  took  place  309  years  after- 
wards, in  the  time  of  William  II.,  when  the  badge  of  the 
cross  was  assumed ;  or  whether  it  was  sent  for  the  warning 

'  Henry  of  Huntingdon  seldom  loses  an  opportunity  of  amplifying  the 
accounts  he  borrows  from  others ;  but  in  this  instance  he  has  spoiled  an  in- 
teresting narrative,  by  omitting  some  of  its  most  graphic  details,  given  in 
the  Saxon  Chronicle.  "Its  minuteness  and  simplicity^"  says  Ingram, 
"  proves  that  it  was  written  at  no  great  distance  of  time  from  the  event. 
It  is  the  first  that  occurs  of  any  length  in  the  older  MSS.  of  the  Saxon 
Chronicle.*'  The  reader  will  do  well  to  refer  to  the  original  account^  p.  327 
of  BohtCs  Edition. 

'  This  relates  to  Ofh's  temporary  division  of  the  province  of  Canterbury 
into  two  archbishoprics ;  one  of  which  he  placed  at  Lichfield,  in  his  own 
kingdom  of  Mercia,  under  Bishop  Higbert.— -See  William  of  Malmeshury, 

'  I  have  adopted  the  indefinite  instead  of  the  definite  article,  *'  a  pro- 
vince,** as,  though  both  the  Saxon  Chronicle  and  Florence  of  Worcester  men- 
tion the  coronation  of  Egfert  in  his  father's  lifetime,  neither  of  them  call 
him  king  of  Kent.  He  may  have  had  a  district  granted  to  him  with  the 
title  of  king,  as  was  common  in  those  times. 


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188  HENET  OF  HUMTINGDON.  [bOOE  IV. 

of  the  nations,  that  they  might  escape  by  refonnation  the 
scourge  of  the  Danes  which  speedily  followed,  it  is  not  for 
me  rashly  to  detennine.  The  secrets  of  the  Lord  I  leave  to 
the  Lord. 

[A.D.  787.]  In  Hie  fourth  year  of  his  reign,  Bertric  took  to 
wife  Eadburga,  daughter  of  OflGa,  king  of  Mercia,  by  which 
alliance  the  king*s  power  was  strengthened,  and  his  arro- 
gance increased.  In  those  days  the  Danes  landed  in 
Britain,  from  tliree  ships,  to  plunder  the  country.  The 
king's  officer^,  descrying  them,  set  upon  them  incautiously, 
making  no  doubt  but  he  should  carry  them  captives  to  the 
king's  castle ;  for  he  was  ignorant  who  the  people  were  who 
had  landed,  or  for  what  purpose  they  had  come.  But  he 
was  instantly  slain  in  the  throng.  He  was  the  first  Eng- 
lishman killed  by  the  Danes,  but  after  him  many  myriads 
were  slaughtered  by  them ;  and  these  were  the  first  ships 
that  the  Danes  brought  here.  The  following  year  a  synod 
was  convened  at  Pincenhall*. 

[a.d.  789.]  In  the  sixth  year  of  Bertric's  reign  a  synod 
was  assembled  at  Acley.  Likewise,  Sigga  infamously  and 
treasonably  murdered  Alfwold,  king  of  Northumbria,  and  a 
heavenly  light  was  often  seen  in  the  place  where  the  king, 
the  servant  of  the  Lord,  was  buried,  which  was  at  Hexham. 
Osred  succeeded  him,  but  the  year  afterwards  he  was  be- 
trayed and  driven  out  of  the  kingdom,  and  Moll,  the  son  of 
Ethelred,  was  restored  to  the  throne.  But  four  years  after- 
wards, Osred,  returning  with  a  force  he  had  collected  to 
expel  Ethebed,  by  whom  he  had  been  dethroned,  was  sur- 
roimded,  seized,  and  put  to  death.  He  was  buried  at 
Tynemouth  ^.  Truly  it  is  said,  "  How  blind  to  the  future 
is  the  mind  of  man ! "  For  when  the  yoimg  Osred  ascended 
the  throne  with  a  light  step  and  a  merry  heart,  he  little 
thought  that  in  two  years  he  should  vacate  the  royal  seat, 
and  in  four  should  lose  his  life ;  so  that  in  prosperity  we 
should  be  always  thoughtful,  not  knowing  how  near  adver- 
sity is  at  hand.  At  that  time  Offia,  king  of  Mercia,  gave 
orders  that  St.  Ethelbert  *  should  be  beheaded.     Lambert 

»  The  "  Teere,**'—Sax,  Ckrcn. 

«  Fingall,  Spelman  Concil.,  i.  304.     • 

'  "  In  the  abbey  at  the  mouth  of  the  riyer  Tine  "^Flor.  Wor, 

*  He  was  king  of  the  East- Angles. 


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A.D.  795.]  KINa  OFFA  DIBS.  189 

did  not  survive  ihis  period,  and  Abbot  JEthelard  was  elected 
archbishop  ^  Also  Eanbald,  the  archbishop  of  York,  conse* 
crated  Baldulf  bishop  of  Whitheme^. 

[a.d.  793.]  In  the  tenth  year  of  Bertric's  reign,  fieiy 
dragons  were  seen  flying  iq  the  air,  and  this  prodigy  was 
followed  by  two  calamities.  The  first  was  a  severe  famine ; 
the  second  was  an  irruption  of  the  heathen  nations  from 
Norway  and  Denmark,  who  first  cruelly  butchered  the 
people  of  Northumbria,  and  then,  on  the  14th  of  January, 
destroyed  the  churches  of  Christ,  with  the  inhabitants,  in 
the  province  of  Lindisfeune.  At  the  same  time,  Sigga,  the 
thane,  who  had  foully  betrayed  the  holy  king  Alfwold,  pe- 
rished as  he  deserved. 

In  the  eleventh  year  of  Bertric's  reign,  the  Northiunbrians 
slew  their  king  Ethelred,  who,  the  same  year  that  King 
Osred  was  killed,  elated  with  pride,  had  put  away  his  wife, 
and  married  another ;  unconscious  that  within  two  years  he 
also  WOUI4  be  cut  offi  and  soon  end  the  joy  of  a  short  reign 
in  the  desolation  of  the  grave.  Eardulf  succeeded  him  in 
the  kingdom  of  Northumbria.  He  was  anointed  king,  and 
installed  in  the  royal  seat  at  York,  by  Archbishop  Eanbald, 
and  bishops  Ethelbert,  Higbald,  and  Baldulf.  Not  long 
afterwards  Archbishop  Eanbald  died  at  York,  and  was  suc- 
ceeded by  another  of  the  same  name.  About  this  time 
Pope  Adrian,  as  well  as  the  powerful  king  Offa,  depsuted 
this  life  [a.d.  796].  Egfert,  the  son  of  0&,  became  king 
of  Mercia,  but  he  died  141  days  afterwards,  and  was  suc- 
ceeded by  King  Kenul£  The  same  year  Eadbert,  whose 
other  name  was  Pren,  obtained  the  kingdom  of  Kent. 
Then,  also,  the  heathens  ravaged  Northumbria,  and  pillaged 
Egfert's  monastery  at  "  Donemuth."  *  But  the  bravest  and 
most  warlike  of  the  EngUsh  meeting  them  in  battle,  their 
leaders  were  slain,  and  tiiey  retreated  to  their  ships.  Pur- 
suing their  flight,  some  of  their  ships  were  vn-ecked  by  a 
storm,  and  many  men  were  drowned ;  but  some  were  taken 
alive,  and  beheaded  on  the  beach.    Not  long  afterwards, 

'  Of  Canterbury. 

**'Beadiilf;"  Flor,  Wor,;  the  same  as  Badulph,  Biddulph,  &c.— 
Ingram. 

*  "  That  is  to  say,  Weannouth.  Henry  of  Hontingdon  is  mistaken,  af 
well  as  Simeon  of  Durham ;  see  him,  ▲.!>.  794." — Peirie, 


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140  HENBY   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  IV. 

Kenwulf,  the  king  of  Mercia,  over-ran  and  ravaged  the 
country  of  the  Kentish  men,  and  took  prisoner  and  carried 
off  with  him  their  king  Pren\  who  was  unable  to  resist  his 
victorious  arms,  and  was  lurking  in  the  winding  glens  and 


[a.d.  797.]  In  the  fourteenth  year  of  the  reign  of  Bertric, 
the  Komans  cut  out  the  tongue  and  put  out  the  eyes  of 
Pope  Leo,  and  drove  him  from  his  see.  But  he,  as  writers 
report,  was  by  the  mercy  of  God  again  able  to  see  and 
speak,  and  became  again  pope.  Three  years  afterwards 
[a.d.  800],  King  Charles  being  made  emperor,  and  conse- 
crated by  Pope  Leo,  condemned  to  death  those  who  had  so 
disgracefully  treated  the  pope,  but  at  his  intercession  he 
chMiged  the  sentence  of  death  for  banishment.  Three 
years  afterwards,  also,  Bertric,  king  of  Wessex,  died.  At 
this  time  there  was  a  great  battle  at  Hweallege^,  in  North- 
umbria,  in  which  fell  Alric,  the  son  of  Herbert,  and  many 
others.  But  I  should  be  too  prolix  if  I  were  to  relate  all 
the  particulars  of  these  wars,  their  nature  and  results  ;  for 
the  EngUsh  people  were  naturally  rude  and  turbulent,  and 
thus  were  incessantly  torn  by  civil  wars. 

Li  the  year  of  grace  800,  Egbert,  the  eighth  in  order  of 
the  ten  kings  mentioned  in  the  Second  Book  for  their  high 
and  singular  prerogative-*,  began  his  reign  over  Wessex, 
which  lasted  37  years,  and  6  months.  In  his  youth  he 
had  been  driven  into  banishment  by  King  Bertric,  his 
predecessor,  and  Offa,  king  of  Mercia,  arid  spent  two  years 
of  exile  in  the  coiu't  of  the  king  of  the  Franks*,  where  he 

'  See  Saxon  Chronicle  for  tlie  craelties  Kenwulf  is  alleged  to  have  in- 
flicted on  his  captive.  But  "  this  wanton  act  of  barbarity,"  says  Ingram, 
*'  seems  to  have  existed  only  in  the  depraved  imagination  of  the  Norman 
interpolator  of  the  Saxon  annals.  Hoveden,  and  Wallingford,  and  others, 
have  repeated  the  idle  tale ;  but  I  have  not  hitherto  found  it  in  any  his- 
torian of  authority."— i\ro;«  to  Sax.  Chron.  Our  historian,  Henry  of  Hun- 
tingdon, to  his  credit,  rejects  it.  He  also  omits  the  account  which  follows,  of 
a  synod  of  small  importance,  and  which  Ingram  considers  to  have  been  also 
an  interpolation. 

^  Whalley,  in  Lancashire,  then  included  in  the  great  kmgdom  of  Nor- 
thumbha. 

*  See  before,  pp.  51,  52 ;  Egbert  waa  the  eighth  Bretwalda,  or  para- 
mount king  of  the  Heptarchy. 

*  Charlemagne,  by  whom  Egbert  was  admitted  to  familiar  intimacy,  and 
intrusted  with  important  employments. 


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A.D.  800.]  EGBERT,   KING   OF  WES8EX.  141 

was  honourably  distingiiished.  After  the  death  of  Bertric 
he  returned,  and  succeeded  to  the  throne.  That  same  day, 
Ethelmund,  the  "ealdorman,"^  rode  over  from  Wic^,  and 
coming  to  Kmemeresford  [Kempsford]  met  Weoxtan,  the 
ealdorman,  with  the  men  of  Wiltshire.  There  was  a  great 
fight  between  them,  in  which  both  the  chiefs  were  slain,  but 
the  Wiltshire  men  got  the  victory.  Four  years  afterwards, 
^thelard,  the  archbishop  of  Canterbiuy,  died,  and  Wulfred 
was  consecrated  in  his  place.  Two  years  after  that 
[a.d.  805],  Cuthred,  the  king  of  Kent,  died  also ;  and  the 
next  year,  Eardulf,  king  of  Northumbria,  was  driven  a  fiigi- 
tive  from  his  kingdom. 

[a.d.  813.]  Egbert,  in  the  fourteenth  year  of  his  reign, 
ravaged  the  dominions  of  the  Welsh  kings  from  east  to 
west,  there  being  no  one  able  to  resist  his  power.  The 
year  afterwards,  Charles,  king  of  the  Franks  and  emperor  of 
Kome,  departed  this  life ;  and  the  following  year,  the  vene- 
rable Pope  Leo  was  a  corpse.  He  was  succeeded  by  Ste- 
phen', and  Stephen  by  Paschal.  Two  years  afterwards 
[a.d.  819]  Kenulf,  king  of  Mercia,  died ;  and  Ceolwulf  was 
raised  to  the  throne,  which  he  filled  only  three  years,  when 
he  was  driven  from  it  by  Bemwulf. 

[a.d.  823.]  In  the  twenty-fourth  year  of  Egbert's  reign, 
he  fought  a  battle  against  Bemwulf,  king  of  Mercia,  at 
Ellendune*,  from  whence  it  is  said,  **  Ellendune's  stream 
was  tinged  with  blood,  and  was  choked  with  the  slain,  and 
became  foul  with  the  carnage."  There,  indeed,  after  a  pro- 
digious slaughter  on  both  sides,  Egbert  obtained  a  dearly- 
bought  victory.  From  thence,  pushing  his  advantage  and 
following  up  his  success,  he  detached  his  son  Ethelwulf, 
who  afterwards  became  king,  with  Ealcstan  his  bishop  ^ 
and  Wulfheard  his  ealdorman,  and  a  large  force  into  Kent, 

^  Saxon  Chronicle ;  Henry  of  Huntingdon  Latinizes  the  title  by  the  -word 
"  consul." 

*  The  country  of  the  Wiccii  (see  before,  p.  80),  of  which  Worcester  was 
the  capital.  Eempsey,  on  the  Severn,  a  short  distance  from  that  city,  may 
hare  been  the  scene  of  this  combat.  Ingram,  mistranslating  the  Saxon 
Chronicle,  says  that  Ethelmund  rode  over  the  Thames.  Dr.  Giles's  trans* 
lation  is  correct.  Wick-war,  in  Gloucestershire,  retains  the  name  it  derived 
from  its  British  founders. 

'  Popes  Leo  III.  and  Stephen  IV. 

*  Wilton.  »  Of  Sherborne. 


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143  HENRY  OP  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  IV. 

who  drove  Baldred  over  the  Thames.  Then  the  men  (ji 
Kent,  Surrey,  Sussex,  and  Essex,  suhmitted  to  King  Eg- 
bert's government,  having  been  unjustly  deprived  some 
years  before  of  that  of  his  kinsman  iSren^.  The  same  year 
the  king  and  people  of  East-Anglia  acknowledged  King 
Egbert  as  their  sovereign,  after  which,  in  the  course  of  the 
year,  the  East-Anglians  slew  Bemwulf,  the  Mercian  king. 
He  was  succeeded  by  Ludecen.  The  same  year  there  was 
a  great  battle  between  the  Britons  *  and  the  men  of  Devon- 
shire at  Camelford,  in  which  several  thousands  fell  on  both 
sides.  The  year  following,  Ludecen,  king  of  Mercia,  and 
five  ealdormen  with  him,  were  slain. 

[a.d.  827.]  Egbert,  in  the  twenty-seventh  year  of  his 
reign,  expelled  Withlaf,  who  had  succeeded  Ludecen,  from 
his  kingdom  of  Mercia,  and  annexed  it  to  his  own  domi- 
nions. When  he  had  thus  established  his  power  over  all 
England  south  of  the  Humber,  he  led  an  army  against  the 
Northumbrians  to  Dore.  But  they  humbly  offering  this 
powerful  king  submission  and  allegiance,  parted  in  peace. 
The  year  following,  King  Egbert,  from  motives  of  com- 
miseration, yielded  to  Withlaf  the  kingdom  of  Mercia,  to 
be  held  in  subjection  to  himself.  Next,  King  Egbert  led 
an  army  into  North  Wales,  and  by  the  power  of  his  arms 
reduced  it  to  submission.  The  year  following  these  events, 
on  the  death  of  Wulfred,  archbishop  of  Canterbury,  he  was 
succeeded  by  Ceolnoth. 

[a.d.  832.]  In  the  thirty-third  year  of  King  Egbert's  reign 
the  Danes  again  made  their  api)earance  in  England,  38 
years  after  they  had  been  defeated  at  **  Thone-muth."^  The 
first  place  they  ravaged  was  "  Sepeige."*  The  next  year 
they  came  over  in  35  very  lai'ge  ships,  and  Egbert,  with  his 
army,  fought  against  them  at  Charmouth,  and  there  by 
chance  of  war  the  Danes  gained  the  day,  and  two  bishops 
fell,  Herefrith  and  Wigfrith,  with  two  ealdormen,  Dudda 
and  Osmod.  The  year  following,  the  Danes  landed  in 
West-Wales,  and  the  Welshmen  joined  them,  and  revolted 
against  King  Egbert.  The  king,  however,  with  his  usual 
good  fortune,  soundly  beat  both  the  Danes  and  the  Welsh- 

1  See  p.  140.     Of  Pren's  relationship  to  Egbert  there  is  no  account 
»  Of  Cornwall.  »  See  note,  p.  188. 

*  The  Isle  of  Sheppey,  in  Kent. 


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A.D.  836.]  DEATH  OF  BGBEBT.  143 

men  at  Hengest-down,  triumphantly  routing  the  bravest  of 
their  bands.  The  year  afterwards  [a.d.  836],  Egbert,  king 
[of  Wessex]  and  paramount  monarch  of  all  Britain,  yielded 
to  fate  and  died.  He  left  to  his  sons  the  inheritance  of  the 
kingdoms  which  were  under  his  immediate  government, 
Ethelwulf  succeeding  him  in  the  kiijgdom  of  Essex ;  while 
he  gave  to  Athelstan,  Kent,  Sussex,  and  Essex 

We  are  now  arrived  at  a  period  when  England  was  united 
imder  one  paramount  king,  and  the  terrible  scourge  of  the 
Danes  was  introduced.  It  is  fitting,  therefore,  that  this 
new  state  of  affairs  should  be  reserved  for  a  separate  Book. 
But  as  was  done  in  the  Second  Book  of  this  History,  it 
may  be  well  shortly  to  recapitulate  the  contents  of  the  pre- 
sent Book.  The  succession  of  the  several  kingdoms  shall, 
therefore,  be  arranged  in  regular  order,  that  this  summary 
may  clearly  elucidate  any  confusion  caused  by  the  names  of 
such  a  number  of  kings  being  mixed  up  together.  If  by  so 
doing  I  may  be  serviceable  to  the  reader,  I  shall,  through 
God's  mercy,  reap  the  desired  fruit  of  my  laboiu". 

A  summary  of  the  kings  of  Kent,  of  whom  the  present 
Book  treats : — 

LoTHAiRE  reigned  xii.  yeais,  and  met  his  death  in  battle 
with  the  East-Saxons. 

Edric,  who  was  not  of  the  royal  race,  reigned  one  year 
and  a  half 

NiTHRED  and  Wibbehard,  neither  of  whom  also  were  of 
the  blood  royal,  reigned  vi.  years,  and  then  were  expelled. 

WiTHREn,  in  whom  the  royal  line  was  restored,  reigned 
peaceably  xxxiv.  years,  and  made  an  alliance  with  King 
Ina. 

Eadbert,  son  of  Withred,  with  his  two  brothers,  reigned 
xxii.  years. 

Ethelbert's  reign  lasted  xii.  years. 

Egfert  reigned,  as  far  as  I  can  gather  from  former 
writers,  xxxiv.  years. 

Eadbert  Pren  reigned  iii.  years,  when  he  was  carried  away 
captive  by  Kenwulf,  king  of  Mercia. 

CtiTHRED  wore  the  diadem  ix.  years. 

Baldred  reigned  xviii.  years,  when  he  was  driven  from 
his  kingdom  by  Egbert,  king  of  Wessex. 

Egbert,  king  of  Wessex,  retained  the  kingdom  he  had 


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144  HENBY   OF  HUNTINGDON  [BOOK  IV. 

conquered  as  long  as  he  lived,  and  at  his  death  left  it  to 
his  son  Athelstan.  The  royal  race  of  the  kings  of  Kent 
then  failed,  and  their  right  to  the  kingdom  passed  into 
other  hands.  ' 

A  summaiy  of  the  kings  of  Wessex,  of  whom  this  Book 
treats : — 

Ceadwal,  in  the  second  year  of  his  reign,  obtained 
possession  of  the  Isle  of  Wight;  twice  he  ravaged  Kent, 
and,  going  to  Borne,  died  there  in  his  garments  of  baptism, 
having  exchanged  for  them  the  ensigns  of  royalty. 

Ina  reigned  xxxvii.  years.  He  conquered  in  battle 
Gerent,  king  of  the  Welsh,  and  subdued  in  his  wars  the 
East-Saxons.  Piously  resigning  his  crown,  he  went  to 
Bome. 

Ethelhabd,  a  kinsman  of  King  Ina,  governed  the  king- 
dom he  resigned  to  him,  peaceably,  for  xiv.  years. 

CuTHBED  reigned  xvi.  years,  and  twice  conquered  the 
Britons  by  the  laws  of  war,  as  also  King  Ethelbald. 

SiGEBEBT,  a  cruel  king,  reigned  one  year  and  a  little 
more,  when  he  was  justly  deposed,  and  afterwards  slain. 

Cynewulp  reigned  xxiii.  years,  who  was  put  to  death  by 
the  king's  [Sigebert's]  brother. 

Bebtbic  reigned  xvi.  years.  In  his  time  the  barbarities 
of  the  Danes  were  first  inflicted  on  Britain. 

Egbebt's  reign  lasted  xxxvii.  years.  He  overran  Britain 
[Wales?]  from  east  to  west,  and  was  victorious  in  his  wars 
against  Bemwulf,  king  of  Mercia,  and  Baldred,  king  of 
Kent,  together  with  Kmg  Whitlaf  and  the  Danes. 

A  summary  of  the  kings  of  Nobthumbbia  mentioned  in 
this  Book : — 

Al^hh),  brother  of  King  Egfrid,  learned  in  the  Scrip- 
tures and  warlike,  reigned  xx.  years. 

OsBED,  his  son,  reigned  xi.  years,  and  was  killed  in  battle. 

Kenbed  reigned  ii.  years,  and  falling  sick  shortly  died. 

OsBic  [II.]  reigned  xii.  years  till  his  death. 

Ceolwulf,  brother  of  King  Kenred,  just  named,  after  a 
reign  of  viii.  years,  became  a  monk.  In  whose  time  Bede, 
the  venerable  priest  and  Christian  philosopher,  made  a 
blessed  end. 

Egbebt,  a  kinsman  of  Ceolwulf,  after  a  reign  of  xxi.  years, 
made  a  feeble  life  illustrious  by  a  glorious  end. 


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SUMMARY   OF   KINGS.  145 

OswuLF,  his  son,  reigned  one  year,  and  was  traitorously 
murdered  by  his  household. 

Mol-Ethelwold  reigned  vi.  years,  and  was  compelled  to 
abdicate. 

Alrid  reigned  viii.  years,  and  was  driven  out  and  de- 
posed by  his  people. 

Ethelred,  the  son  of  Mol,  reigned  iii.  years,  and  fled 
from  the  face  of  his  rebellious  nobles. 

Alfwold  reigned  x.  years,  and  was  traitorously  slain  by 
Sigga,  one  of  his  officers. 

OsRED  [II.],  the  nephew  of  the  last-named  king,  after 
reigning  one  year,  was  driven  from  his  kingdom  by  his  peo- 
ple, and  three  years  afterwards  was  killed. 

Ethelred,  the  son  of  Mol,  was  restored  to  the  throne ; 
but,  after  reigning  iv.  years,  was  slain  by  his  ever  turbulent 
people. 

Ardulf,  after  a  reign  of  xii.  years,  was  expelled  by  his 
subjects.  Afterwards,  the  Northumbrian  people,  actuated, 
as  it  appears,  by  an  insane  spirit  of  insubordination,  were 
for  some  time  without  any  king,  and  submitted  by  treaty  to 
King  Egbert. 

A  smnmary  of  the  kings  of  Mercia  mentioned  in  this 
Book  :— 

Ethelred,  son  of  Penda,  after  a  reign  of  xii.  years, 
nobly  submitted  to  the  monastic  rule. 

Kenred,  his  kinsman,  reigned  v.  years,  and  then,  going 
to  Eome,  triumphantly  joined  a  society  of  monks. 

Ceoldred,  son  of  King  Ethelred,  reigned  viii.  years, 
and  fought  stoutly  against  King  Ina. 

Ethelbald  the  froud  reigned  xii.  years.  He  ravaged 
Northumbria,  and  subdued  the  people  of  Wales,  and  be- 
came paramount  over  all  the  kings  of  England ;  but  at  last 
he  was  conquered  by  King  Cuthred,  and  was  afterwards 
slain. 

Bernred  held  the  kingdom  one  year,  but  Offa  the 
powerful  expelled  him. 

Offa  reigned  xxxix.  years.  In  his  wars  he  worsted 
Cynewulf,  king  of  Wessex,  and  the  Kentish  men,  and 
the  Northumbrians. 

Egfert,  the  son  of  Offa,  scarcely  sm-vived  him  one  year. 


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146  HENBY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOZ  IV. 

Kenulf  reigned  xxvi.  years  in  peace,  and  died  the  com- 
mon death  of  mortals. 

Ceolwulf  held  the  kingdom  iii.  years,  but  it  was  then 
wrested  from  him  by  Bemulf  the  ferocious. 

Bernulf  reigned  one  year,  and,  being  overcome  by  King 
Egbert,  disappeared. 

LuDicEN  was  slain  in  the  first  year  of  his  reign,  with  his 
five  principal  officers. 

Withlaf,  having  been  conquered  in  the  war  with  King 
Egbert,  was  restored  to  his  kingdom  as  a  tributary. 

As  to  the  kingdom  of  East-Anglia,  it  had  already  been, 
by  various  means,  annexed  to  the  other  kingdoms  ^. 

'  These  tables,  which  embrace  a  period  of  little  more  than  a  century  and 
a  half,  extending  from  A.D.  681  to  836,  contain  a  melancholy  record  of  the 
unsettled  state  of  the  times.  Wars,  revolutions,  treason,  and  murder  so  did 
their  work,  that,  of  the  45  kings  of  the  Hexarchy  enumerated  in  these  lists, 
fifteen  only,  and  three  of  these  after  very  short  reigns,  died  peaceably, 
and  in  possession  of  their  kingdoms.  Of  the  remainder,  eleven  were  driven 
from  the  throne ;  eleven  died  violent  deaths,  some  in  battle,  but  most  of 
them  murdered  by  their  rebellious  subjects ;  and  eight  became  monks,  as 
much,  Henry  of  Huntingdon  admits,  to  escape  a  violent  death  as  from  mo- 
tives of  piety.  The  kingdom  of  Northumbria  presents  the  worst  spectacle. 
There,  of  thirteen  kings  during  the  period  above  mentioned,  three  only  died 
possessed  of  the  throne,  one  of  them  falling  sick  and  dying  in  the  second 
year  of  his  reign.  It  is  remarkable  also  that  all  the  three  died  in  less  than 
half  a  century  of  the  period  referred  to.  Afterwards,  for  a  century  and  a 
quarter,  not  one  of  the  kings  who  successively  filled  the  throne  of  Northum- 
bria died  in  it.  Four  were  expelled  by  their  subjects;  and  of  four  who  were 
killed,  one  only  fell  in  battle  ;  the  rest  were  traitorously  murdered,  and  two 
became  monks. 


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THE   DANISH  INVASION.  147 


BOOK  V. 

THE    PREFACE. 

In  the  beginning  of  this  History  I  remarked  that  Britain  had 
been  afflicted  with  &ve  scourges ;  the  fourth  of  which — that  in- 
flicted by  the  Danes — I  propose  to  treat  of  in  the  present  Book : 
indeed  this  infliction  was  more  extensive  as  well  as  vastly  more 
severe  than  the  others.  For  the  Romans  subjugated  Britain  in  a 
short  time,  and  governed  it  magnificently  by  right  of  conquest.' 
The  Picts  and  Scots  made  frequent  irruptions  from  the  northern 
districts  of  Britain,  but  their  attacks  were  confined  to  that 
quarter,  and  they  were  never  very  destructive ;  and,  being  re- 
pelled, their  invasions  quickly  ceased.  The  Saxons,  as  their  strength 
mcreased,  gradually  took  possession  of  the  country  by  force  of 
arms ;  they  then  settled  on  the  lands  they  conquered,  established 
themselves  in  their  possessions,  and  were  governed  by  fixed  laws. 
The  Normans,  again,  suddenly  and  rapidly  subjugating  the  island, 
granted  to  the  conquered  people  life  and  liberty,  with  their  just 
rights,  according  to  the  ancient  laws  of  the  kingdom.  Of  them  I 
shall  have  to  speak  hereafter. 

The  Danes,  however,  overran  the  country  by  desultory  inroads  ; 
their  object  being  not  to  settle  but  to  plunder  it,  to  destroy  rather 
than  to  conquer.  If  they  were  sometimes  defeated,  victory  was  of 
no  avail,  inasmuch  as  a  descent  was  made  in  some  other  quarter 
by  a  larger  fleet  and  a  mor^  numerous  force.  It  was  wonderful 
how,  when  the  English  kings  were  hastening  to  encounter  them 
in  the  eastern  districts,  before  they  could  fall  in  with  the  enemy's 
bands,  a  hurried  messenger  would  arrive  and  say,  "  Sir  king, 
whither  are  you  marching  ?  The  heathens  have  disembarked 
from  a  countless  fleet  on  the  southern  coast,  and  are  ravaging  the 
towns  and  villages,  carrying  fire  and  slaughter  into  every  quarter." 
The  same  day  another  messenger  would  come  running,  and  say, 
"  Sir  king,  whither  are  you  retreating  ?  A  formidable  army  has 
landed  in  the  west  of  England,  and  if  you  do  not  quickly  turn 
your  face  toward  them,  they  will  think  you  are  fleeing,  and  follow 
in  your  rear  with  fire  and  sword."  Again,  the  same  day,  or  on  the 
morrow,  another  messenger  would  arrive,  saying,  "  What  place,  0 
noble  chiefs,  are  you  making  for  ?  The  Danes  have  made  a 
descent  in  the  north ;  already  they  have  burnt  your  mansions. 


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148  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  V. 

even  now  they  are  sweeping  away  your  goods,  they  are  tossing 
your  young  children  raised  on  the  points  of  their  spears,  your 
wives,  some  they  have  forcibly  dishonoured,  others  they  have  car- 
ried off  with  them."  Bewildered  by  such  various  tidings  of  bitter 
woe,  both  kings  and  people  lost  their  vigour  both  of  mind  and 
body,  and  were  utterly  prostrated ;  so  that  even  when  they  de- 
feated the  enemy,  victory  was  not  attended  with  its  wonted  tri- 
umphs, and  supplied  no  confidence  of  safety  for  the  future. 

The  reason  why  the  anger  of  God  was  inflamed  against  them 
with  such  fury  is  this.  In  the  early  days  of  the  English  church 
reliffion  flourished  with  so  much  lustre,  that  kings  and  queens^ 
nobles  and  bishops,  as  I  have  before  related,  resigned  their  dig- 
nities, and  entered  into  the  monastic  life  \  But  in  process  of  time 
all  piety  became  extinct,  so  that  no  other  nation  equalled  them  for 
impiety  and  licentiousness  ;  as  especially  appears  m  the  history  of 
the  Korthumbrian  kings.  This  unpiety  was  not  only  manifest  in 
the  royal  annals,  but  extended  to  every  rank  and  order  of  men. 
Nothing  was  held  disgraceful  except  devotion,  and  innocence  was 
the  surest  road  to  destruction.  The  Almightjr,  therefore,  let  loose 
upon  them  the  most  barbarous  of  nations,  like  swarms  of  wasps, 
and  they  spared  neither  age  nor  sex  ^  ;  viz.  the  Dajies  and  Goths, 
Norwegians  and  Swedes,  Vandals  and  Frisians.  These  desolated 
this  country  for  230  years,  from  the  beginning  of  the  reign  of 
King  Ethelwulf,  until  the  time  of  the  arrival  of  the  Normans 
under  the  command  of  King  William.  France  also,  from  its  con- 
tiguity to  England,  was  often  invaded  by  these  instruments  of  the 
divine  vengeance,  as  it  richly  deserved.  With  these  explanations 
I  will  now  resume  the  course  of  my  history. 


[a.d.  837.]  "While  Ethelwulf  himself,  in  the  first  year  of 
his  reign,  opposed  the  enemy  just  spoken  of  in  one  part  of 

'  It  did  not  occur  to  Henry  of  Huntingdon  that  the  practice  he  extols,  of 
abandoning  the  duties  of  their  station  for  the  cloister,  common  among  all 
ranks  at  this  time,  was  at  least  one  of  the  causes  of  that  national  enervation 
-nrhlch  laid  the  kingdom  open  to  the  successful  irruptions  of  the  Northmen. 

^  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  in  common  with  most  of  the  early  annalists, 
overstates  both  the  atrocities  of  the  Northmen,  as  compared  with  other  in- 
vaders, and  the  duration  of  their  ravages.  His  account  in  this  Preface  of 
the  progress  of  the  Saxons  in  subduing  and  settling  the  country,  would  as 
fitly  apply  to  that  of  the  Danes  and  Norwegians.  Long  before  the  Norman 
conquest  the  first  immigrants  had  settled  down  into  peaceable  and  industrious 
habits ;  and  though  we  must  receive  cum  grano  salis  some  recent  attempts 
to  place  the  civilization  of  the  Northmen,  in  the  ninth  and  tenth  centuries,  on 
a  high  footing,  there  is  sufficient  evidence  that  the  unmitigated  barbarism 
attributed  to  them  by  such  writers  as  Huntingdon,  must  be  a  very  exag- 
gerated representation. 


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A.D.  837.]  DANES  LAND   IN    SOUTH  AND   EAST.  149 

his  kingdom,  as  the  heathen  hordes  were  overrunning 
every  quarter  he  detached  the  ealdorman  Wulf  herd,  with 
part  of  his  army,  to  attack  the  Danes  who  had  landed 
near  Hamton  [Southampton],  out  of  33  ships ;  whom  he 
triumphantly  defeated  with  great  slaughter.  King  Ethel- 
vsrulf  also  dispatched  the  ealdorman  Ethelhelm,  with  the 
Wessex  forces,  against  another  band  of  the  enemy,  at 
Port^ ;  but  after  a  long  fight  Ethelhelm  was  slain,  and  the 
Danes  gained  the  day.  The  year  following,  Herebert,  the 
ealdorman,  fought  with  them  at  "  Mercsware  ;"^  but  the 
Danes  defeated  and  routed  his  troops,  and  he  was  slain. 
The  same  year  the  heathen  army  reduced  all  the  eastern 
coast  of  England,  in  Lindsey,  East-Anglia,  and  Kent,  put- 
ting vast  numbers  of  the  inhabitants  to  the  sword.  A  year 
later,  the  army  of  the  Danes,  penetrating  further  into  the 
country,  made  great  slaughter  about  Canterbiuy,  Kochester, 
and  London. 

[a.d.  840.]  In  the  fifth  year  of  his  reign,  Ethelwulf  having 
divided  his  army,  fought  with  one  division  against  the 
men  who  disembarked  from  35  ships  at  Charmouth,  where 
he  was  defeated  by  the  Danes,  for,  tliough  their  fleet  was 
small,  the  largest  ships  were  crowded  vdth  men.  The 
fifth  year  afterwards,  Elcstan,  the  venerable  bishop  [of 
Sherbum],  and  Emwulf,  the  ealdorman,  with  the  Somer- 
setshire men,  and  Osric,  the  ealdorman,  vdth  the  men  of 
Dorset,  fought  with  the  Danes  at  the  mouth  of  the  Parret, 
and,  by  God's  help,  gained  a  glorious  victory,  having  slain 
great  numbers  of  the  enemy  [a.d.  851].  In  the  sixteenth 
year  of  his  reign,  Ethelwulf,  with  his  son  Ethelbald,  collect- 
ing his  whole  force,  fought  a  battle  with  a  very  great  army, 
which,  landing  from  250  ships  at  the  mouth  of  the  Thames, 
had  taken  by  storm  two  noble  and  famous  cities,  London 
and  Canterbuiy,  and  routed  Berthwulf,  king  of  Mercia, 
with  his  army,  a  defeat  which  he  never  recovered.  He  was 
succeeded  by  Bru-hred  in  the  kingdom  of  Mercia.     The 

^  Portland  Island.  The  Saxon  Chronicle  says  that  Ethelhelm  headed  the 
men  of  Dorset 

*  Matthew  of  Westminster  mistakes  the  name  of  a  people  for  the  name 
of  a  place.  Both  Ingram  and  Griles  translate  it  "  among  the  marshlanders.'* 
Florence  of  Worcester  interprets  the  passage  "quamplures  Merscuario- 
rum,"  some  of  the  Mercians 


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150  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  V. 

Danes,  entering  Surrey,  encountered  the  royal  troops  at 
Ockley,  where  ensued  between  the  two  numerous  armies 
one  of  the  greatest  battles  ever  fought  in  England.  The 
warriors  fell  on  both  sides  like  com  in  harvest,  and  the 
bodies  and  limbs  of  the  slain  were  swept  along  by  rivers  of 
blood.  It  would  be  tedious  and  wearisome  to  describe 
particulars.  God  vouchsafed  the  victoiy  to  the  faithful, 
and  caused  the  heathen  to  suffer  a  disgraceful  defeat ;  so 
King  Ethelwulf  signally  triumphed.  The  same  year,  Athel- 
stan,  king  of  Kent,  and  Ealhere,  the  ealdorman,  had  a 
naval  action  with  the  Danes,  at  Sandwich,  in  which  they 
took  nine  ships,  and  put  the  rest  of  the  fleet  to  flight,  with 
great  slaughter  of  the  enemy.  An  ealdorman  named  Ceorl, 
also,  with  the  men  of  Devonshh'e,  fought  against  the 
healiiens  at  Wieganbeorge\  slaying  many  and  obtaining 
the  victory.  This  year,  therefore,  was  fortunate  to  the 
English  nation ;  but  it  was  the  first  that  the  heathen  army 
remained  in  the  country  over  winter  ^. 

[a.d.  853.]  In  the  eighteenth  year  of  his  reign,  Ethelwulf 
gave  powerM  assistance  to  King  Burhred  in  reducing  the 
North- Welsh  to  subjection  :  he  also  gave  him  his  daughter 
in  marriage.  The  same  year.  King  Ethelwulf  sent  his  son 
Alfred  to  Rome,  to  Leo  the  pope,  and  Leo  afterwards  con- 
secrated him  king,  and  adopted  him  for  his  son.  This 
year,  the  ealdormen  Ealhere,  with  the  men  of  Kent,  and 
Huda,  with  the  men  of  Surrey,  fought  against  the  army  of 
the  pagans  in  the  Isle  of  Thanet,  and  great  numbers  were 
slain  and  drowned  on  both  sides,  and  both  the  ealdormen 
were  killed. 

In  the  nineteenth  year  of  his  reign,  Ethelvmlf  gave  the 
tenth  of  all  his  land^  to  ecclesiastical  uses,  for  the  love  of 
God  and  for  his  own  salvation.  Afterwards  he  went  to 
Rome  in  great  state,  and  abode  there  a  year.  On  his 
return,  he  obtained  in  marriage  the  daughter  of  Charles 
the  Bald,  king  of  France,  and  brought  her  with  him  to  his 

1  Wembury,  near  Plymouth. 

^  One  MS.  of  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  adds  "  in  Thanet,**  which  agrees 
with  the  Saxon  Chronicle. 

^  Not  only  the  tenth  of  the  royal  domains,  but  the  tenh  of  all  the  lands 
in  the  kingdom.  See  the  Saxon  Chronicle,  and  Matthew  of  Westminster 
who  transcribes  the  original  charter. 


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A.D.  858.]         DEATH  OP  ETHELWULF.  151 

own  country.  Two  years  after  his  marriage  he  departed 
this  life,  and  was  buried  at  Winchester  [a.d.  858].  At  first 
he  had  been  bishop  of  Winchester^ ;  but  on  the  death  of 
his  father  Egbert,  from  the  necessity  of  the  case,  he  was 
made  king.  He  had  by  his  [first]  wife  four  sons,  all  of 
whom,  in  turn,  succeeded  him  in  the  kingdom.  About  this 
time  the  heathens  wintered  in  Sheppey. 

This  illustrious  king  Ethelwulf  left  his  hereditary  king- 
dom of  Wessex  to  his  son  Ethelbald ;  and  to  his  other  son, 
Ethelbert,  he  left  the  kingdoms  of  Kent,  Essex,  and  Sussex. 
Both  brothers  were  young  men  of  princely  virtues,  and 
ruled  their  kingdoms  well  as  long  as  they  lived.  Ethelbald, 
the  king  of  Wessex,  held  his  peaceably  five  years,  and  then 
prematurely  died  of  disease.  All  liigland  lamented  the 
royal  youth  and  mourned  over  him  deeply,  and  they  buried 
him  at  Sherborne  [a.d.  860],  and  the  English  people  felt 
what  they  had  lost  in  him. 

Ethelbert,  the  brother  of  the  last-named  king,  succeeded 
him  in  the  kingdom  of  Wessex,  having  been  before  king  of 
Kent.  In  his  time  a  large  fleet  came  over,  and  the  crews 
stormed  Winchester.     Thus  it  was  that 

"  The  ancient  city,  long  the  seat  of  power. 
To  ruin  feU.** » 

Then  Osric,  the  ealdorman,  with  the  men  of  Hampshire, 
and  Ethelwulf,  the  ealdorman,  with  the  men  of  Berkshire, 
fought  against  this  army,  and,  routing  it  with  great  slaughter, 
Remained  the  victors. 

[a.d.  865.]  In  the  fifth  year  of  Ethelbert*s  reign,  the 
army  of  the  heathens  came  into  Thanet,  and  the  Kentish 
men  came  to  terms  with  them,  promising  money;  but, 
pending  the  treaty,  the  enemy  stole  away  by  night,  and 
ravs^ed  all  the  eastern  part  of  Kent.  The  same  year, 
Ethelbert,  after  a  reign  of  ^yb  years  in  Wessex  and  ten 
years  in  Kent,  departed  this  life  [a.d.  866] ;  upon  which, 
Ethelred,  his  brother,  ascended  ^e  throne.  The  same 
year  a  great  army  of  ps^ans  landed  in  England,  under  the 

'  Henry  of  Huntingdon  is  the  only  authority  for  Ethelwulf's  having  re- 
ceiyed  ordination  as  a  bishop.  Some  of  the  old  writers  describe  him  as  a 
sub-deacon.  See  Goscelin's  Life  of  Swithun.  Boger  of  Wendover  agrees 
with  HnntingdoiL — Pelrie,  *  "  Urbs  antiqoa  ruat,"  Virg.  ^n.  ii.  368. 


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15a  HENRY   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  V. 

command  of  their  chiefs,  Hinguar  and  Ubba,  most  valiant 
but  cruel  men ;  Hinguar  being  of  great  ability,  and  Ubba 
of  extraordinary  courage.  They  spent  the  winter  in  East- 
Anglia,  entering  into  a  treaty  and  receiving  horses  from  the 
inhabitants,  who,  being  awed  into  tranquillity  by  the  enemy's 
force,  were  spared  for  the  present. 

In  the  second  year  of  Ethelred's  reign,  this  artny,  under 
the  command  of  Hinguar  and  Ubba,  marched  into  North- 
lunbria  as  far  as  York.  There  was  great  dissension  among 
the  people  of  that  province,  they  having,  with  their  usual 
fickleness,  ejected  their  king  Osbert,  and  set  up  one  named 
Ella,  who  was  not  of  the  royal  blood.  Being  at  length 
reconciled,  they  assembled  an  army  and  came  to  York, 
where  the  pagan  army  lay.  Having  effected  a  breach  in 
the  wall,  they  entered  the  town,  fighting  boldly,  and  both 
kings,  Osbert  and  EUa,  were  slain,  with  a  vast  number  of 
the  Northumbrians  within  and  without  the  city :  the  sur- 
vivors made  a  treaty  with  the  heathens.  This  year  died 
Bishop  Elcstan,  and  he  was  buried  at  Sherborne,  where  he 
had  been  bishop  50  years. 

[a.d.  868.]  l^ng  Ethelred,  in  the  third  year  of  his  reign, 
went  to  Nottingham,  with  his  brother  Alfred,  to  the  help  of 
Burhred,  king  of  Mercia ;  for  the  army  of  the  Danes  had 
marched  to  Nottingham,  and  there  wintered.  Hinguar, 
seeing  that  the  whole  force  of  the  English  was  assembled, 
and  fliat  his  army  was  besieged  and  inferior  in  strength, 
had  recourse  to  smooth  words,  and  with  dangerous  cun- 
ning obtained  terms  of  peace  from  the  EngUsh.  He  then 
retired  to  York,  and  with  great  cruelty  maintained  posses- 
sion one  year.  St.  Edmund  was  taken  to  heaven  in  the 
year  of  our  Lord  870,  the  fifth  of  the  reign  of  Ethelred. 
For  the  army,  mentioned  before,  imder  the  command  of 
their  King  Hinguar,  marching  through  Mercia  to  Thetford, 
established  itself  there  for  t£e  winter,  causing  entire  ruin 
to  the  wretched  inhabitants.  Whereupon  Edmund,  the 
king,  preferring  rather  to  suffer  death  than  to  witness  the 
sufferings  of  his  people,  was  seized  by  the  infidels,  and  his 
sacred  body  was  fastened  to  a  stake,  and  transfixed  by  their 
arrows  in  every  part.  But  God,  in  his  mercy,  honoured  the 
spot  with  numerous  miracles. 

[a.d.  871.]  In  the  sixth  yesir  of  King  Ethelred  there  came 


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A.D.  871.]  NINE   BATTLES   THIS  TEAB.  163 

a  new  and  immense  armji  which,  rushing  like  a  torrent, 
and  carrying  all  before  it,  advanced  as  far  as  Reading. 
Their  nmnbers  were  so  great  that  as  they  could  not  march 
in  one  body  they  advanced  in'  troops  by  separate  routes. 
They  were  led  by  two  kings,  Boegsec  and  Healfdene.  Three 
days  after  this,  Ethelwulf,  the  ealdorman,  attacked  two  of 
the  enemy's  chiefs^  at  Englefield,  and  slew  one  of  them 
who  was  called  Sidroc.  Foin*  days  afterwards,  King  Ethel- 
red,  with  his  brother  Alfred  and  a  great  host,  arrived  at 
Reading,  and  gave  battle  to  the  army  of  the  Danes.  Great 
numbers  fell  on  both  sides,  but  the  Danes  gained  the  vic- 
tory. Foin*  days  afterwards,  King  Ethelred  and  his  brother 
Alfred  fought  the  whole  army  assembled  at  Ashdown.  It 
was  formed  in  two  divisions :  one,  headed  by  the  pagan 
kings  Boegsec  and  Healfdene,  was  encountered  by  King 
Ethelred,  and  Boegsec  was  slain ;  the  other  division  was 
led  by  the  pagan  earls,  and  Alfred,  the  king's  brother, 
attacked  them,  and  killed  th\3  five  earls,  Sidroc  the  elder, 
and  Sidroc  the  younger,  and  Osbem,  and  Frena,  and 
Harold.  The  army  was  routed  and'many  thousands  were 
slain,  the  battle  lasting  till  night-fall.  Fourteen  days  after- 
wards. King  Ethelred  and  Alfred  his  brother  again  engaged 
the  enemy  at  Basing,  but  there  the  Danes  obtained  the 
victory.  Again,  in  the  course  of  two  months,  King  Ethel- 
red and  his  brother  Alfred  fought  another  battle  with  this 
same  army  at  Merton,  in  which  numbers  fell  on  both  sides ; 
and  the  Danes,  though  they  gave  way  for  a  time,  in  the 
end  remained  victors.  In  this  battle  were  slain  Heahmund, 
bishop  [of  Sherborne],  and  many  other  great  men  of  the 
English.  After  this  battle  the  great  army  came  in  the 
summer  to  Reading.  This  year  King  Ethelred  died  after 
Easter ;  he  had  reigned  five  years,  and  was  buried  at  Wim- 
bum  Minster.  Then  Alfred,  his  brother,  the  son  of  Ethel- 
wulf, began  his  reign  over  Wessex ;  and  one  month  after- 
wards, he  fought  with  a  small  band  against  the  imited  army 
at  Wilton,  and  put  them  to  flight  for  a  time,  but  afterwards 
the  Danes  gained  the  day.  This  year,  therefore,  there  were 
nine  pitched  battles  with  the  Danish  army  in  that  part  of 

'  Henry  of   Huntingdon  calls  them   "consuls,"   the  Saxon   Chronicle 
"earls,"  the  Norwegian  "jarls." 


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154  HENKY   OF   HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  V. 

the  kingdom  lying  south  of  the  Thames,  besides  the  sudden 
inroads  which  Alfred,  the  king's  brother,  and  the  king's 
officers,  frequently  made  into  the  enemy's  quarters.  In  ihia 
year  were  slain  one  king  and  nine  earls ;  and  the  chief  men 
of  Wessex  made  a  truce  with  the  army  of  the  pagans. 

[a.d.  872.]  In  the  first  year  of  King  Alfred,  the  army^ 
came  from  Beading  to  London,  and  tihere  wintered;  and 
the  Mercians  made  peace  with  the  army.  The  second  year, 
King  Healfdene  led  the  same  army  into  lindsey,  and  they 
wintered  at  Torksey;  and  the  third  year  they  had  their 
winter  quarters  at  Repton.  There  were  confederated  with 
him  three  other  kings,  Guthrun,  and  Oskytel,  and  Anwynd, 
so  that  they  became  irresistible,  and  drove  beyond  the  sea 
King  Burbred,  who  had  reigned  22  years  over  Mercia.  He 
went  to  Bome,  and,  there  dying,  he  was  buried  in  the 
church  of  St.  Mary,  at  the  EngUsh  school.  But  the  Danes 
transferred  the  kingdom  of  Mercia  to  one  Ceolwulf,  a  weak 
king,  who  was  to  do  their  bidding.  For  he  gave  them  hos- 
tages, and  swore  that  he  would  yield  up  the  kingdom  to 
them  whenever  they  desired,  and  that  he  would  be  always 
ready  to  aid  them  in  his  own  person  and  with  all  the  force 
he  could  muster. 

[a.d.  875.]  In  the  fourth  year  of  King  Alfired  the  army 
broke  up  from  Bepton  in  two  divisions,  with  one  of  which 
King  Healfdene  marched  into  Northumbria,  and  fixed  his 
winter  quarters  on  the  Tyne;  and  he  took  possession  of 
the  land,  and  divided  it  among  his  followers,  and  they  cul- 
tivated it  two  years  ^.  He  also  made  predatory  excursions 
against  the  Picts^.     But  the  larger  division  of  the  army 

'  By  "  the  anny,"  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  following  the  Saxon  Ohronkle, 
means  thronghout  this  narrative  the  main  My  of  the  invading  Northmen, 
who  had  now  permanently  quartered  themselyes  in  England ;  wintering  there, 
and  not  retiring,  like  the  first  piratical  bftnds,  at  the  close  of  summer. 

*  The  Saxon  Chronicle  says,  an.  875,  when  "  the  army  "  took  up  their 
winter  quarters  on  the  Tyne,  **  the  array  suhdued  the  land ; "  and,  an.  87^, 
''that  year  Healfdene  apportioned  the  lands  of  Northambria,  and  thej 
thenceforth," — not  merely  creeping  it  for  two  years,  as  Henry  of  Hunting' 
don  seems  to  intimate, — **  continued  ploughing  and  tilling  it."  This  early 
colonization  of  the  north  of  England  is  an  important  &ct  in  reference  to 
recent  disquisitions  on  the  progress  of  the  Northmen. 

^  The  Saxon  Chronicle  adds,  "and  the  Strathclyde  Britons  ;"  the  Danes 
thus  turning  their  arms  against  the  common  enemies  of  the  English  and  of 
themselves  as  now  settlers  in  the  country. 


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A.D.  875-878.]  THE  DANES  PARAMOUNT.  155 

followed  the  before-mentioned  three  kings  to  Cambridge, 
where  they  sat  down  one  year.  This  year  King  Alfred  fought 
a  naval  battle  against  seven  ships,  one  of  which  he  took 
and  the  rest  he  put  to  flight.  The  year  following,  the  army 
of  the  three  kings  came^  to  Wareham,  in  Wessex ;  and 
King  Alfred  made  a  truce  with  them,  taking  some  of  their 
chief  men  as  hostages.  They  also  swore  to  him,  as  they 
had  never  before  done  to  any  one^,  that  they  would  shortly 
depart  the  kingdom.  Notwithstanding  which,  those  of  the 
army  who  had  horses  stole  away  a  few  nights  afterwards, 
and  made  for  Exeter.  This  year  [876],  Rollo,  with  his  fol 
lowers,  landed  in  Normandy.  The  year  following,  the 
[remainder  of  the]  perjured  army  marched  from  Wareham 
to  Exeter ;  and  the  fleet,  sailing  round,  was  overtaken  by  a 
storm,  so  that  120  ships  were  wrecked  at  Swanage.  But 
King  Alfred  had  pursued,  with  a  large  force,  the  part  of 
the  army  which  was  mounted ;  but  he  could  not  come  up  with 
them  before  they  reached  Exeter;  and  there  they  gave  him 
hostages,  as  many  as  he  would,  and  swore  to  keep  the 
peace,  which  they  did  faithfully.  Afterwards  the  army 
marched  into  Mercia,  and  took  possession  of*  some  psirt  of 
that  kingdom ;  part  they  gave  up  to  Ceolwulf. 

[a.d.  878.]  In  the  seventh  year  of  King  Alfred,  the 
Danes  were  in  possession  of  the  whole  kingdom,  from  the 
north  bank  of  the  Thames ;  King  Healfdene  reigned  in 
Northumbria,  and  his  brother  in  East-Anglia,  while  the 
three  other  kings  before  named,  with  Ceolwulf,  the  king 
they  had  appointed,  reigned  in  Mercia,  the  country  about 
London  and  Essex ;  so  fliat  there  only  remained  to  King 
Alfred  the  country  south  of  the  Thames,  and  even  that  was 
grudged  him  by  the  Danes.  The  three  kings  therefore 
advanced  to  Chippenham  in  Wessex,  with  fresh  swarms  of 
men  arrived  from  Denmark ;  they  spread  over  the  country 
like  locusts,  and  there  being  no  one  able  to  resist  them, 
they  took  possession  of  it  for  themselves.  Some  of  the 
people  fled  beyond  sea,  some  to  King  Alfred,  who  concealed 
himself  in  the  woods  with  a  small  band  of  followers ;  others 
submitted  to  the  enemy.     But  when  King  Alfred  neither 

*  Saxon  Chronicle,  "  gtole  into,"  took  by  surprise. 

'  Saxon  Chronicle,  "  upon  the  holy  ring  or  bracelet."    See  Petrie's  note. 

'  Saxon  Chronicle,  "apportioned." 


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166  HENBT  OP  HUNTINGDOlf.  [BOOK  V. 

possessed  any  territory,  nor  had  any  hope  of  possessing  it, 
the  Lord  had  regard  for  the  remnant  of  his  people. 
For  the  brother  of  King  Healfdene,  coming  with  23  ships 
to  Devonshire  in  Wessex,  King  Alfred's  people  slew  him, 
with  840  men  of  his  army,  and  their  standard,  called  the 
Kaven,  was  there  taken.  Upon  which  King  Alfred,  who 
had  constructed  a  fortified  post  at  Athelney,  encouraged  by 
this  success,  sallied  forth  from  thence  with  the  men  of 
Somersetshire  who  were  nearest  to  it,  and  had  frequent  en- 
counters with  the  army.  Then  in  the  seventh  week  after 
Easter,  he  rode  to  Brixton,  on  the  eastern  side  of  Selwood, 
and  there  came  to  meet  him  all  the  Somersetshire  and 
Wiltshire  men,  and  the  residue  *  of  the  Hampshire  men, 
and  they  were  glad  at  his  coming.  The  day  following  he 
went  to  Hey  ^,  and  in  another  day  to  Heddington ;  and  there 
he  gave  battle  to  the  army  and  routed  and  pursued  it  to 
their  place  of  strength,  before  which  he  sat  down  fourteen 
days.  Then  the  army  delivered  hostages  to  the  king,  and 
promised  on  oath  to  quit  the  kingdom.  Their  king  also 
agreed  to  be  baptized ;  and  it  was  done.  For  Guthrun,  the 
chief  of  their  kings,  came  to  Alfred  for  baptism ;  and  Alfred 
became  his  god-father,  and,  having  entertained  him  for 
twelve  days,  dismissed  him  with  many  gifts. 

[a.d.  879.]  In  the  eighth  year  of  Alfred,  this  same  army 
went  from  Chippenham  to  Cirencester,  and  there  wintered 
peaceably.  The  same  year  the  foreigners,  that  is  the 
Vikings  ^  assembled  a  new  force  and  sat  down  at  Fulham 
on  the  Thames.  There  was  an  eclipse  of  the  sun  this 
year  [a.d.  880].  The  year  following,  the  before-named 
army  of  King  Guthrun  retired  from  Cirencester  and 
marched  into  East-Anglia,  where  they  settled  on  the  land 
and  apportioned  it  among  them  *.    The  same  year  the  army 

*  Saxon  Ohronicle,  ''that  portion  of  the  men  of  Hampshire  which  was 
on  this  side  of  the  sea.'' 

^  Iley-mead,  near  Melksham,  Wilts. 

^  The  word  "  Vicinga  "  is  used  in  the  Saxon  Chronicle,  but  all  the  trans- 
lators render  it  ''pirates."  Spelman  derives  the  appellation  from  vie,  a  hay  or 
harbour,  as  well  as  a  camp  or  fortress,  which  the  vic-ing  either  dwelt  in,  or 
plundered. 

*  East-Anglia,  comprising  Norfolk  and  Suffolk,  was  now  settled  perma- 
nently, as  Northumbria  had  been  before.  Alfred's  treaty  with  Guthrun, 
defining  the  boundaries,  is  extant. — See  Wilki'M,  Leges  Anglo-Sax. 


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A.D.  883.]  Alfred's  successes.  157 

which  had  been  posted  at  Fulham  crossed  over  the  sea,  and 
was  stationed  one  year  at  Ghent.  The  year  afterwards  they 
fought  with  the  Franks,  and  overcame  fliem ;  and  the  third 
year  they  went  along  the  banks  of  the  Maese  into  France ; 
at  which  time  King  Alfred  took  four  Danish  ships  in  a  naval 
battle,  destroying  the  crews.  In  the  fourth  year  [a.d.  883], 
the  army  went  up  the  Scheldt  to  Conde,  and  Ihere  esta- 
blished itself  for  a  year.  This  year  Pope  Marinus  sent  to 
King  Alfred  a  piece  of  the  wood  of  the  Holy  Cross ;  and 
Alfred  sent  alms  to  Rome,  and  also  to  the  shrine  of  St. 
Thomas  in  India,  in  performance  of  a  vow  which  he  had 
made  when  the  enemy's  army  wintered  at  London. 

[a.d.  885.]  In  the  foiuteenth  year  of  King  Alfred,  part  of 
the  army  which  was  in  France  came  over  to  Rochester,  and 
besieging  the  city  began  to  construct  another  fortress ;  but 
on  Alfred's  approach  they  fled  to  their  ships,  and  crossed 
over  the  sea.  King  Alfred  also  sent  a  naval  expedition 
from  Kent  to  East-Anglia,  and  when  the  fleet  was  off  the 
mouth  of  the  river  Stour,  it  encountered  sixteen  ships  of 
the  Vikings,  and  obtained  the  victory  in  the  engagement. 
On  their  return  with  the  booty  in  triumph,  they  were  met 
by  a  large  fleet  of  the  Vikings,  and  a  battle  ensued,  in 
which  they  were  worsted.  The  same  year  Charles  ^  king 
of  the  Franks,  was  killed  by  a  wild  boar.  He  was  a  son  of 
Lewis,  the  son  of  Charles  &e  Bald,  whose  daughter  Judith 
was  married  to  King  Ethelwulf.  Then  also  Pope  Marinus 
fell  asleep.  The  year  following  the  army  of  the  Danes 
ascended  the  Seine  to  the  b/idge  at  Paris,  and  there 
wintered  ^  King  Alfred  besieged  London,  the  greatest 
part  of  the  Danish  force  having  joined  their  army  in  France ; 
and  the  Danes  being  departed,  all  the  Enghsh  submitted 
to  him  and  acknowledged  him  king.  And  he  committed 
the  city  to  the  keeping  of  Ethelred  the  ealdorman'.     The 

Meaning  Oarloman,  second  son  of  Lewis  le  B^gue.    He  died  in  884. 

^  "  This  celebrated  siege  of  Paris  is*  minutely  described  by  Abbo,  abbot  of 
Fleury,  in  two  books  of  Latin  hexameters,  which,  howeyer  barbarous,  con- 
tain some  curious  and  authentic  matter  relating  to  the  history  of  that  pe- 
riod.*'— Ingram.  The  bridge,  the  most  ancient  of  Paris,  called  "  le  grand 
pont,**  or  "  pont  du  change,**  was  built  by  Charles  the  Bald,  to  prevent  the 
Danes  from  making  themselves  masters  of  Paris  so  easily  as  they  had  often 
done  before. 

'  Eoger  of  Wendover  calls  this  Ethelred  earl  of  Mercia,  and  says  that  he 
waa  of  the  royal  stock  of  that  nation,  and  had  married  Blfleda,  the  king's 


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168  HENBY  OP  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  V. 

year  following  these,  the  army  hreakmg  up  from  the  hridge 
at  Paris,  went  along  the  Seine  as  far  as  the  Mame,  and 
along  the  Mame  as  far  as  Chezy^,  and  sat  down  there  and 
on  the  Yonne  two  years.  About  this  time,  by  the  act  of 
Amulf,  five  kings  were  created  in  France^. 

[a.d.  890.]  In  the  nineteenth  year  of  King  Alfred,  Guth- 
run,  the  Danish  king,  who  was  god-son  of  King  Alfred,  and 
governed  East-Anglia,  departed  this  life.  The  same  year 
file  army  went  from  the  Seine  to  St.  Loo,  which  is  between 
Brittany  and  France;  and  the  Bretons  fighting  with  them 
and  driving  them  into  a  river,  many  were  drowned.  Now 
Plegmimd  was  chosen  of  God  and  all  the  people  to  be 
archbishop  [of  Canterbuiy].  The  year  following  the  army 
went  eastward,  and  King  Amulf,  with  the  Franks,  Saxons, 
and  Bavarians,  fought  against  it  and  routed  it.  Afterwards 
this  great  army  returned  into  England,  with  all  that  be- 
longed to  it,  disembarking  from  250  ships  at  Limne-mouth, 
a  port  in  the  eastern  part  of  Kent,  near  the  great  wood  of 
Andred^  which  is  120  miles  long  and  30  miles  broad.  On 
landing,  they  threw  up  a  fortified  camp  at  "Awldre."* 
Meanwhile  Hasteng  came  with  80  ships  into  Thames 
harbour,  and  constmcted  a  camp  at  Milton.  Afterwards, 
however,  he  swore  to  King  Alfred  that  he  would  never 
injure  him  in  any  matter.  The  king,  therefore,  conferred 
upon  him,  and  his  wife  and  sons,  many  gifts ;  one  of  them 
the  king  had  held  in  baptism,  and  his  great  general  Edred 
the  other.    Hasteng,  however,  always  faithless,  constructed  a 

(Alfred's)  daughter.  According  to  him,  Alfred  now  rebuilt  London,  and  re- 
paired the  walls. 

*  A  corruption  of  caz-rei,  casa  regia,  softened  by  the  French  into  Chezy. 
^  z,  e,  the  empire  of  Charlemagne  was  dismembered,  and  thus  divided. 

'  See  a  previous  note,  p.  44. 

*  Appledore,  near  Romney,  in  Kent.  These  fortified  places  were  merely 
earth-works  surrounding  the  camps.  Such  works  are  thus  described :— - 
*'  The  Northmen  secured  their  station  by  a  fortification  constructed  of  turfs 
in  their  usual  manner." — Ann.  Fvldens,  ConL  "  The  Northmen  fortified 
themselves,  according  to  their  custom,  with  stakes  and  mounds  of  earth."— 
.47171.  Mettens,  Botiquet,  viii.  53,  73.  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  in  speaking  of 
these  "  works,"  generally  says,  "  construit  castrum,"  which  might  be  lite- 
rally, but  improperly,  translated  huUt  a  castle.  All  the  translators  of  the 
Saxon  Chronicle  use  the  phrase  "  constructed  a  fortress,"  or  "  wrought  a  for- 
tress." I  have  preferred,  in  interpreting  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  to  call  these 
field-works  fortified  camps,  or  simply  "  camps."  Every  one  knows  what  a 
Danish  camp,  or  a  Eoman  camp,  means. 


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AJ>.  895.]      DANES  DRIVEN  FKOM  THE  LEA.  169 

csanp  at  Bamfleet ;  and  when  he  issued  forth  to  plunder  the 
king  s  country,  the  king  stormed  the  castle  and  took  there 
his  wife,  with  his  sons,  and  his  ships.  But  he  restored  his 
wife  and  sons  to  Hasteng,  because  he  was  their  godfather. 
And  now  a  messenger  came  to  King  Alfred  saying,  "  A 
hundred  ships  have  come  from  Northumbria  and  East- 
Anglia,  and  are  besieging  Exeter."  While,  therefore,  the 
king  was  marching  there,  the  army  which  was  at  Appledore 
invaiied  Essex  and  constructed  a  camp  at  Shoebiuy.  Push- 
ing on  from  thence  they  reached  Buttington  near  the 
Severn,  and  there  they  threw  up  a  fortification ;  but  being 
driven  from  it  they  took  refiige  in  their  camp  in  Essex. 
Meanwhile  the  army  which  had  laid  siege  to  Exeter,  when 
the  king's  approach  was  known,  betook  tiiemselves  to  their 
ships  and  carried  on  piracy  by  sea.  A  fourth  army  came 
the  same  year  from  Northumbria  to  Chester,  but  they  were 
there  besieged,  and  sufiered  so  much  from  himger  that  they 
were  compelled  to  eat  most  of  their  horses. 

[a.d.  895.]  In  the  twenty-third  year  of  King  Alfred,  the 
Danes  who  were  in  Chester  made  a  circuit  by  North 
Wales  and  Northumbria  to  Mersey,  an  island  of  Essex ;  and, 
afterwards,  in  winter,  they  towed  their  ships  up  the  Thames 
into  the  river  Lea.  But  the  army  which  had  besieged 
Exeter  was  overtaken  plundering  near  Chichester,  where 
large  numbers  perished,  and  they  lost  some  of  their  ships. 
The  year  following  the  army  which  was  on  the  river  Lea 
made  a  sort  of  entrenchment  near  that  river,  20  miles 
from  London.  The  Londoners  issued  forth  to  attack  it, 
and  fighting  with  the  Danes,  slew  four  of  their  leaders. 
Almighty  God  giving  them  the  victory  in  time  of  need. 
The  Danes  retreated  to  their  camp,  whereupon  the  king 
caused  the  waters  of  the  Lea  to  be  diverted  into  three 
channels,  that  they  might  not  be  able  to  bring  out  their 
ships ;  which  the  Danes  perceiving,  they  abandoned  their 
ships  and  went  across  the  country  to  Bridgenorth,  near  the 
Severn,  where  they  fortified  their  camp  and  established  their 
winter  quarters ;  having  committed  their  wives  to  the  care 
of  the  East-Angles.  The  king  pursued  them  with  his 
army,  while  the  Londoners  brought  some  of  the  deserted 
ships  to  London,  and  bmut  the  rest.  In  the  three  years, 
therefore,  which  I  have  mentioned,  that  is,  from  the  time 


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100  HENBT  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  V. 

the  Danes  entered  the  port  of  Limne-mouth,  they  inflicted 
great  losses  on  tlie  English,  but  they  suffered  far  greater 
Siemselves.  In  the  fourth  year  "the  army"  was  divided, 
one  part  going  into  Northumbria,  another  into  East-Anglia, 
and  a  part  of  it  crossed  the  channel  and  entered  the  Seine ; 
afterwards,  however,  some  ships  of  the  Danes  came  on  the 
coast  of  Wessex,  and  by  frequent  descents  for  the  sake  of 
plunder,  and  continual  skirmishes,  caused  no  small  loss  to 
the  provincials  of  Wessex.  Of  these  nmnerous  conflicts  I 
will  relate  one,  because  it  was  out  of  the  common  course. 
King  Alfred  caused  long  ships,  of  40  oars  or  more,  to  be 
fitted  out  against  this  Danish  fleet.  There  were  six  of  the* 
Danish  vessels,  in  a  harbour  of  the  Devonshire  coast,  which 
nine  of  the  royal  ships  attempted  to  surprise.  However, 
the  Danes,  becoming  aware  of  it,  launched  three  of  their 
vessels  to  engage  the  enemy,  the  others  being  aground, 
high  on  the  beach,  and  the  tide  being  out.  Six,  therefore,  of 
the  EngUsh  ships  engaged  v^ith  these  three  Danish,  and  the 
other  three  EngUsh  ships  made  for  the  three  Danish  vessels 
which  lay  on  the  shore.,^  Though  the  odds  were  six  to 
three,  the  Danes  fought  bravely  and  desperately,  maintain- 
ing the  unequal  conflict  a  long  time.  But  numbers  pra- 
vaUed,  and  two  of  the  Danish  ships  were  taken ;  the  third 
sheered  off,  after  all  that  manned  thfem  Lad  fallen,  except 
five.  After  this  success,  in  attempting  to  join  their  consorts 
near  the  Danish  ships  on  shore,  the  English  got  aground. 
Upon  observing  which  the  Danes  fi'om  the  three  vessels  on 
the  beach  attacked  the  three  English  ships  that  were  op- 
posed to  them.  Then  those  who  were  on  board  the  other 
six  ships  might  be  seen  beating  their  breasts  and  tearing 
their  hair^  while  they  looked  on  imable  to  afford  as- 
sistance. But  the  English  defended  themselves  man- 
fully, while  the  attack  of  the  Danes  was  bold  and  spirited. 
Forty-two  fell  on  the  side  of  the  English,  and  120  on 
that  of  the  Danes.  Among  these  was  Lucumon,  the  com- 
mander of  the  royal  force,  who  fell  fighting  bravely ;  upon 
which  the  English  gave  way  by  degrees,  and  the  Danes 
might  almost  claim  the  victoiy.     And  now  by  the  return  of 

*  This  is  an  interpolation,  in  Henry  of  Huntingdon'9  usual  style,  in  the 
unaffected  narrative  of  the  Saxon  Chronicle,  while  he  omits  some  cha- 
racteristic details ;  but  the  whole  episode  is  extremely  interesting. 


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A.D.  901.]        DEATH  OP  KINO  ALFRED.  161 

the  tide,  the  Danes  were  enabled  to  put  to  sea,  pursued  too 
late,  and  to  no  purpose,  by  the  nme  English  ships.  But 
the  victorious  Danes  were  met  by  a  contrary  wind,  which 
drove  two  of  their  ships  on  shore,  and  the  crews  were  made 
prisoners  and  brought  to  the  king,  who  commanded  them 
all  to  be  hanged  at  Winchester.  Those  who  were  in  the 
third  ship  sailed  to  Eas^ABglia,  though  severely  woxmded. 
The  same  year  twenty  ships  with  their  crews  perished  on 
the  south  coast. 

[a.d.  901.]  King  Alfred  died,  after  a  reign  of  twenty-eight 
years  and  a  half  over  all  England,  except  those  parts  which 
were  under  the  dominion  of  the  Danes,  His  indefatigable 
government  and  endless,  troubles  I  cannot  worthily  set 
forth  except  in  verse : — 

"  Toilsome  tby  onward  ppth  to  high  renown, 
Thorny  the  chaplet  that  entwin'd  thy  crown, 
Unconquer'd  AUred  i     Thine  the  dauntless  mind. 
That  in  defeat  conid  fresh  resources  find. 
What  though  thy  hopes  were  ever  dash'd  with  care. 
Still  they  were  never  clouded  with  despair: 
To  day,  victorious,  future  wars  \*ere  plann'd. 
To  day,  defeated,  future  triumphs  scann'd. 
'  Thy  way-soil'd  garments,  and  thy  blood-stain'd  sword, 

^^  Sad  pictures  of  the  lot  of  kings  afford ; 

Who  else,  l^e^lus,  throughout  the  wide  world's  space. 

Bore  in  adversity  so  brave  a  iaxx  ? 

The  sword,  for  ever  bare  in  mortal  strife, 

Faird  to  cut  short  thy  destin'd  thread  of  life ; 

Peaceful  thy  end  :  may  Christ  be  now  thy  rest! 

Thine  be  the  crown  and  sceptre  of  the  blest  I 

[a.d.  901.]  Edward,  the  son  of  King  Alfred,  succeeded 
to  his  father's  kingdom,  which  he  held  24  j^ears.  His 
younger  brother  Ethelwald^  married  a  wife  and  seized  on 
Wimbome^  without  leave  of  the  King  and  the  great  men  of 
the  realm  '^,  whereupon  King  Edward  led  a  body  of  troops 
as  far  as  Badbury  near  Wimbome.  But  Ethelwald  and  his 
men  held  possession  of  the  place,  and  closing  the  gates  he 
declared  that  he  would  either  hold  it  or  there  die.     How- 

*  The  Saxon  Chronicle  calls  him  "  the  Etheling"  (see  note,  p.  122),  and 
brother's  son  of  Edward.  »  Wimbome,  in  Dorsetehire. 

*  Saxon  Chronicle,  "  His  Witan/'  the  great  council  of  the  nation. 

M 


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162  HENBT  OF  HUNTIN6D0N.  [BOOK  Y. 

ever,  he  sallied  forth  by  night  and  made  for  the  army  which 
was  in  Northumbria.  His  illustrious  birth  caused  him  to 
be  received  with  open  arms,  and  he  was  elected  king  and 
paramount  lord  over  the  vice-kings  and  chiefs  of  that 
nation.  King  Edward,  however,  arrested  the  woman  whom 
the  young  prince  had  married  contrary  to  the  will  of  the 
bishop,  because  she  had  been  consecrated  a  nun.  The 
same  year  died  Ethelred,  ealdorman  of  Devonshire,  one 
month  before  the  death  of  King  Alfred,  to  whom  he  had 
been  a  faithful  servant  and  follower  in  many  of  his  wars. 

[a.d.  905  K]  In  the  thkd  year  of  King  Edward,  Ethelwald, 
the  king's  brother  ^  assembled  an  army,  which  he  trans- 
ported in  a  numerous  flotilla  into  Essex,  the  people  of 
which  were  speedily  reduced  to  submission.  The  year 
following,  he  led  a  powerful  army  into  Mercia,  and  com- 
pletely ravaged  it  as  far  as  Cricklade.  There  he  crossed 
the  Thames,  and  swept  off  all  the  plunder  he  could  find  in 
Brseden*  and  the  neighbourhood.  After  accomplishing 
this,  they  retimied  home  in  trimnph.  King  Edward,  how- 
ever, having  hastily  collected  some  troops,  followed  their 
rear,  ravaging  the  whole  territory  of  the  Mercians  between 
the  Dyke  and  the  Ouse,  as  far  northward  as  the  Fens. 
After  which  he  resolved  to  retreat,  and  commanded  his 
whole  army  to  retire  together;  and  they  all  withdrew, 
except  the  Kentish-men,  who  remained  contrary  to  the 
king's  order,  though  he  sent  seven  messages  after  them. 
Then  the  army  of  the  Danes  intercepted  the  Kentish-men, 
and  a  battle  was  fought,  in  which  fell  Siwulf  and  Sighelm, 
ealdormen ;  and  Ethelwald,  a  king's  thane ;  and  Kenwulf, 
the  abbot ;  and  Sigebert,  son  of  Siwulf;  and  Eadwold,  son 
of  Acca,  and  many  others,  though  the  most  emment  are 
named.  On  the  side  of  the  Danes  were  slain  King  Ehoric, 
and  the  Etheling  Ethelwald,  whom  they  had  elected  king; 
and  Byrtsige,  son  of  Brithnoth  the  Etheling ;   and  Ysop, 

'  The  date  taken  from  the  Saxon  Chronicle  does  not  agree  with  Henry  of 
Huntingdon's  chronology.  There  is  much  confusion  in  lus  dates  throng^^out 
Edward's  reign,  by  the  years  which  he  reckoned. 

'  See  note  on  preceding  page. 

^  Florence  of  Worcester  d^ribes  it  as  a  wood  or  forest,  called  in  Saxon 
**  Bradene." 


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AJ).  906.]  EING  EDWARD   THE   ELDER.  168 

the  Hold^;  and  Osketel,  the  Hold,  with  many  others;  for 
I  cannot  name  them  all.  There  was  great  slaughter  on 
both  sides,  most  on  that  of  the  Danes,  though  they  claimed 
the  victory.  This  same  year  died  Elswitha,  wife'*  of  King 
Edward. 

[a.d.  906.]  King  Edward,  in  the  fifth  year  of  his  reign, 
concluded  a  peace  with  the  East- Angles  and  Northumbrians 
at  Hitchingford.  The  year  following^,  the  king  levied  a 
powerful  army  in  Wessex  and  Mercia,  which  took  great 
spoils,  both  in  men  and  cattle,  fix>m  the  Northumbrian 
army,  and,  slaying  numbers  of  the  Danes,  continued  to 
ravage  the  country  for  ^ye  weeks.  The  next  year*  the 
Danish  army  entered  Mercia,  with  intent  to  plunder ;  but 
I3ie  king  had  collected  100  ships,  and  dispatched  them 
against  the  enemy.  On  their  approach  they  were  mistaken 
for  allies  ^  and  the  Danish  army  supposed  that  they  might 
therefore  march  securely  wherever  tiiey  would.  Presently ,^ 
the  king  sent  troops  against  them  out  of  Wessex  and 
Mercia,  who  fell  on  their  rear,  as  they  were  retiring  home- 
wards, and  engaged  them  in  fight.  A  pitched  battle  ensued, 
in  which  the  Lord  severely  chastised  tbe  heathen,  many 
thousands  of  them  meeting  a  bloody  death,  and  theur 
chiefs  were  confounded,  and,  falling,  bit  the  dust.  There 
were  slain  King  Healfdene  and  King  Ecwulf  [Ecwils],  and 
the  earls*  Uthere  and  Scurf;  with  the  "Holds"  Othulf, 
Benesing,  Anlaf  [Olave]  the  Black,  Thurferth,  and  Osferth, 
the  collector  of  flie  revenue ;  and  Agmund  the  Hold,  and 
Guthferth  the  Hold,  with  another  Guthferth^.  The  ser- 
vants of  the  Lord,  having  gained  so  great  a  victory,  rejoiced 
in  the  living  God,  and  gave  thanks  with  hymns  and  songs 
to  the  Lord  of  hosts.     The  year  following  [a.d.  911-12], 

>  Hold,  a  Danish  title  of  office,  the  significatioii  of  which  if  unknown. 
It  seems  to  have  heen  inferior  to  that  of  Jarl.  Was  it  the  custody  of  a 
castle  or  fortified  town  ? 

'  *'  Queen  mother  of  King  Bdward." — Rog,  Wendov, 

^  The  Saxon  Chronicle  gives  these  dates  as  a.d.  910-911,  the  ninth  and 
tenth  years  of  Edward. 

*  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  account  of  this  armament  seems  confused,  and 
that  of  the  Saxon  Chronicle  is  not  more  satisfactory. 

•  The  Norwegian  "  Jarl,"  a  dignity  or  office  not  as  yet  introduced  among 
the  Anglo-Saxons. 

'  The  Saxon  Chronicle  places  this  hattle  under  a.b.  911. 


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164  HENBT   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  V. 

on  the  death  of  Ethered,  ealdorman  of  Mercia,  King  Edward 
took  possession  of  London  and  Oxford,  with  all  the  land 
belonging  to  the  province  of  Mercia  ^ 

King  Edward,  in  the  ninth-  year  of  his  reign,  built  Hert- 
ford, a  very  fair,  though  not  a  large  castle  *,  between  the 
Benwic,  the  Memer,  and  the  Lea,  very  clear,  though  not 
deep,  rivers.  The  same  year  he  built  a  town  at  Witham, 
in  Essex,  meanwhile  remaining  at  Maldon ;  and  great  part 
of  the  neighbouring  people,  who  were  before  in  subjection 
to  the  Danes,  submitted  to  him.  The  following  year*, 
the  Danish  army  issued  forth  fix)m  [North]  Hampton 
and  Leicester,  breaJdng  the  truce  which  they  had  with  the 
king,  and  made  great  slaughter  of  the  English  at  Hocker- 
ton,  and  thence  round  in  Oxfordshire.  As  soon  as  they 
returned  to  their  quarters,  another  troop  marched  out  and 
came  to  Leighton ;  but  the  people  of  ttuat  country,  having 
intelligence  of  their  approach,  gave  them  battle,  and,  rout- 
ing them,  regained  the  plunder  which  they  had  collected,  as 
well  as  took  the  horses  of  the  troop. 

In  the  eleventh*  year  of  King  Edward,  a  great  fleet  came 
from  the  south  out  of  Lidwic  [Britany],  under  two  earls, 
Ohter  and  Bahold,  and  they  steered  west  about  till  they 
reached  the  Severn  shore ;  and  they  pillaged  the  country 
in  North*  Wales,  wherever  they  coidd,  near  the  coast,  and 
took  prisoner  Camcleac  the  bishop  [of  Llandaff  ],  and  car- 
ried him  off  to  their  ships.  However,  King  Edward  ran- 
somed him  for  forty  pounds.  Afterwards,  the  army  landed 
in  a  body,  intending  to  pillage  the  neighbourhood  of  Arch- 
enfield^  but  they  were  met  by  the  men  of  Carleon*  and 
Hereford,  and  other  neighboiuing  burgs,  who  fought  and 
defeated  them,  with  the  loss  of  Earl  !^ihold,  and  Geolkil, 

*  Probably  the  neighbouring  districts,  certainly  not  the  whole  province  of 
Mercia,  in  which  we  find  Ethelfleda  exercising  rights  of  sovereignty  after  her 
imaband's  death. 

*  Saxon  Chronicle,  a.d.  913.       ^  The  Saxon  Chronicle  calls  it  a  *'burg." 

*  The  Saxon  Chronicle  places  this  irruption  under  the  year  917. 

*  Saxon  Chronicle,  a.d.  918. 

*  The  Saxon  Chronicle  agrees  with  Henry  of  Huntingdon  in  calling  it 
North  Wales ;  but  it  appears  clearly  to  be  an  error,  as  all  the  places  men- 
tioned border  on  South  Wales  ;  access  being  obtained  to  them  through  tho 
estuary  of  the  Severn.  *  In  Herefordshire. 

*  The  Saxon  Chronicle  has  "  Gloucester ; "  but  Henry  of  Huntingdon  il 
probably  right,  Carleon  being  so  much  nearer  the  scene  of  action. 


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A.D.  918.]       THE  DANES  IN  THE  SEVERN.  165 

the  brother  of  Earl  Ohter,  and  great  part  of  the  army,  and 
they  drove  the  rest  into  a  certam  fortified  camp,  where 
they  besieged  them  till  they  gave  hostages  and  solemnly 
swore  to  depart  the  king's  territories.  Then  the  king 
caused  the  shores  of  the  Severn  to  be  guarded,  from  the 
south  coast  of  Wales  round  to  the  Avon ;  so  that  the  Danes 
durst  nowhere  attempt  an  irruption  in  that  quarter.  Twice, 
however,  they  contrived  to  land  by  stealth ;  once  to  the 
eastward,  at  Watchet^,  the  other  time  at  Porlock  * ;  but  on 
both  occasions  veiy  few  escaped  destruction  besides  those 
who  could  swim  to  their  ships.  These  took  refuge  in  the 
Isle  of  Stepen  [and  Flat-holm^],  in  the  greatest  distress  for 
want  of  food,  which  they  were  imable  to  procure,  so  that 
numbers  died  from  hunger.  Thence  they  retreated  into 
Demet^,  and  from  thence  crossed  over  to  Ireland.  The 
same  year  King  Edward  went  with  his  army  to  Bucking- 
ham, where  he  sat  down  four  weeks,  and  made  an  entrench- 
ment on  both  sides  of  the  water  before  he  went  thence. 
Earl  Thurkytel  submitted  to  him  there,  and  all  the  earls 
and  chief  men  that  belonged  to  Bedford,  with  some  of  those 
belonging  to  Northampton. 

The  old  chronicles^  mention  a  battle  between  the  Kent- 
ish men  and  the  Danes  at  the  Holme,  in  the  twelfth  year  of 
King  Edward* ;  but  they  leave  it  imcertain  who  were  the 
conquerors.  The  second  year  afterwards,  the  moon  was 
eclipsed,  to  the  great  consternation  of  the  beholders ;  the 
third  year,  a  comet  appeared ;  the  fourth  year,  Chester  was 

*  Watchet  and  Porlock  are  two  small  harbours  on  the  Somersetshire  coast 
of  the  Severn  Sea,  or  Bristol  Channel. 

*  The  Steep  and  Flat-holms  are  two  islets  off  the  same  coast. 

'  Demet  or  Divet,  Pembrokeshire,  where,  from  Milford  Haven,  is  the 
nearest  passage  to  Ireland  from  the  west  of  England. 

*  Henry  of  Huntingdon  here  introduces  a  series  of  events  of  an  earlier 
date  than  that  to  which  he  had  arrived. 

*  The  Saxon  Chronicle,  which  contains  no  further  particulars  of  this 
battle,  gives  the  date  of  it  a.d.  902;  the  second,  instead  of  the  "twelfth," 
year  of  Edward's  reign.  As  Henry  of  Huntingdon  notices  the  events  of 
the  succeeding  years  in  a  tolerably  accurate  sequence,  we  might  suppose  that 
the  numeral  x.  had  crept  in  before  ii.,  by  an  error  of  the  transcribers,  did  not 
all  the  MSS.  agree  with  the  received  text,  and  were  it  not  plain,  fi'om  sub- 
sequent entries,  that  Henry  of  Huntingdon  himself  is  generally  at  fault  in 
his  chronology  of  this  period. 


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166  HEKBT   OF  HUKTINODON.  [BOOK  Y. 

rebuUt ;  the  fifth  year,  the  body  of  St  Oswald  was  trans- 
lated from  Bardeney  into  Mercia ;  the  sixth  year  the  Eng- 
lish and  Danes  fou^t  at  Totenhall.  Who  can  find  language 
to  describe  the  fearful  encounters,  the  flashing  arms,  the 
terrible  clang,  the  hoarse  shouts,  the  headlong  rush,  and 
the  sweeping  overthrow  of  such  a  conflict?  In  3ie  end,  the 
divine  mercy  crowned  the  faithful  with  victory,  and  put  to 
shame  the  heathen  Danes  by  defeat  and  flight  The  same 
year,  Ethelfleda,  lady  of  the  Mercians,  who  governed  them 
in  the  name  of  Ethered,  her  infirm  father^,  bmlt  the  fortress 
at  Bramsbuiy. 

*  Ethered  was  the  husband,  not  the  &ther,  of  Bthelfleda.  Mr.  Petzie 
remarkf :  **  The  Saxon  Chronicle  nowhere  tells  ns  who  Ethelfleda  was,  ex- 
cept as  it  describes  her  to  be  the  lady  of  the  Mercians.  When,  therefore," 
he  continues,  "  Henry  of  Huntingdon  found  that  she  succeeded  Ethered, 
but  did  not  know  why,  he  had  recourse  to  the  fiction  of  her  being  hn 
daughter.  And  what  he  tells  us  of  the  infirmity  of  Ethered  is  invented 
to  account  for  her  being  so  warlike  a  woman."  Henry  of  Huntingdon  has 
certainly  £allen  into  the  error  of  calling  Ethelfleda  the  daughter,  instead  of 
the  wife  of  Ethered ;  and  the  Saxon  Chronicle  is  singularly  silent  as  to  the 
fiimily  history  of  so  distinguished  a  character  as  this  daughter  of  Alfred, 
though  it  recounts  her  great  achievements.  But  it  has  escaped  Mr.  Petrie'a 
observation,  that  in  one  passage,  nnder  the  year  922,  the  Saxon  Chronicle 
does  describe  hw  as  the  **  sister  **  of  King  Edward,  with  which  the  chronicle 
of  Ethelwerd,  as  well  as  Florence  of  Worcester,  agree.  Ethered  may  or 
may  not  have  been  infirm,  as  Henry  of  Huntingdon  describes  him ;  but  the 
chsuracter  given  him  by  Florence  of  Worcester  points  rather  to  excellenoa 
suited  to  less  troublesome  times.  There  was,  however,  no  necessity  for 
Henry  of  Huntingdon  to  invent  the  story  of  his  infirm  health,  in  order  to 
account  for  the  active  part  taken  by  Ethelfleda  in  those  wars  ;  for  there  is 
no  record  of  her  having  done  so  in  his  lifetime.  The  first  act  attributed  to 
her,  the  building  of  the  burgh  of  Bremesbury,  bears  date  the  very  year,  or 
according  to  one  MS.,  the  year  before  the  death  of  Ethered.  My  own  im- 
pression is,  that  the  great  fief  of  the  province  of  Mercia,  formerly  a  kingdom 
of  the  Heptarchy,  was  granted  to  Ethelfleda  and  her  husband  jointly,  her 
royal  birth  giving  her  pretensions  to  be  associated  with  him  in  the  govern- 
ment, he  himself,  though  a  high  and  tnisty  officer  of  her  father  King  Alfred, 
being  of  inferior  rank,  though  of  the  blood  royal  of  the  Mercian  kings,  as 
Boger  of  Wendover  describes  him.  At  his  death  the  sole  government  fell  to 
her  as  a  matter  of  right ;  and  it  is  so  described  by  Florence  of  Worcester, 
though  Edw{£rd  usurped  part  of  her  dominions.  It  may  be  remarked  also, 
that  he  mentions  an  act  of  their  joint  government,  just  as  we  should  speak 
of  an  act  of  '*  William  and  Mary ;" — "the  city  of  Carlisle  was  rebuilt  by 
command  of  Ethered  and  Ethelfleda.*'  This  was  A.D.  908,  two  years  be* 
fore  Ethered's  death. 


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A.D.  910-12.]   ETHELFLEDA,  LADY  OF  MERCIA.  167 

,  In  the  eighteenth  *  year  of  Kmg  Edward,  Ethered  ^,  lord 
of  Mercia,  5ie  father  [husband^]  of  Ethelfleda,  having  been 
long  infirm,  departed  this  Hfe,  and  as  he  had  no  son  he 
left  his  territories  to  his  daughter  [wife].  Two  years  after- 
ifards,  Ethelfleda,  lady  of  Mercia,  built  a  burg  at  Scsergate, 
and  the  same  year  another  burg  at  Bridgnorth ;  the  third 
year,  Ethelfleda,  lady  of  Mercia,  built  a  biurg  at  Tamworth, 
in  the  early  part  of  the  summer ;  and  before  August,  that  of 
Stafford.  The  fourth  year,  in  the  beginning  of  summer, 
she  built  a  burg  at  Edderbury ;  and  at  the  end  of  August, 
the  burg  at  Warwick.  The  fifth  year,  she  built  a  burg  at 
Cherbur}^  after  Christmas ;  and  that  at  Warburton,  in  the 
summer;  and  the  same  year  also  that  at  Runcorn.  The 
sixth  year,  she  sent  an  army  into  Wales,  which,  having 
defeated  the  Welch,  stormed  Brecknock;  they  took  pri- 
soners the  wife  of  the  King  of  Wales,  with  thirty-three 
of  her  attendants.  The  seventh  year,  Ethelfleda,  lady  of 
Mercia,  got  possession  of  Derby,  with  the  country  depen- 
dant upon  it;  there  was  a  numerous  garrison  in  the  town 
of  Derby,  but  they  diirst  not  sally  forth  against  her. 
Whereupon  she  commanded  a  vigorous  assault  to  be  made 
on  the  fortress,  and  a  desperate  conflict  took  place  at  the 
very  entrance  of  the  gate,  where  four  of  Ethelfleda's  bravest 
thanes  were  slain;  but,  notwithstanding,  the  assailants 
forced  the  gate,  and  made  a  breach  in  the  walls.  The 
eighth  year  ^,  Ethelfleda,  lady  of  Mercia,  reduced  Chester, 


'  Heniy  of  Huntingdon  hat  recorded  Etbelred'g  deatH  before,  see  p.  163. 
It  occurred,  according  to  different  MSS.  of  the  Saxon  Chronicle,  between 
A.I>.  910-912.  It  may  hare  been  in  the  eighth  instead  of  the  eighteenth 
year  of  Edward's  reign,  erroneously  given  by  Henry  of  Huntingdon ;  and 
the  mistake  would  be  explained  by  the  interpolation  of  the  numeral,  similar 
to  that  suggested  in  a  former  note.  But  Henry  of  Huntingdon  seems  to 
have  fallen  into  the  mistake  of  substitutinar  the  death  of  Ethered  for  that  of 
Elfleda,  which  may  concur  wj.th.  the  18lh  year  of  Edward,  being  noted  in 
the  Chronicle  as  a.d.  918  or  919. 

2  See  note  on  p.  166. 

•  Henry  of  Huntingdon  has  collected  the  acts  of  the  eiirht  years  of 
Ethelfleda's  government  from  various  entries  in  the  Saxon  Chronicle  into 
one  continued  series,  and  has  coupled  them  with  an  erroneous  calculation  of 
periods  in  Edward's  reign.  Not  only  so,  but  this  has  led  him  to  extend  the 
reign  to  26  years^  though  he  states  at  the  commencement  that  it  lasted  24 
only. 


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168  HENBT  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  V. 

and  most  of  the  troops  stationed  there  submitted  to  her ; 
the  Yorkshire  people  also  promised  her  tlieir  alliance,  to 
which  some  gave  pledges,  and  some  confirmed  them  with 
their  oaths.  After  this  convention,  she  died  at  Tamworth 
[a.d.  918-922  ^],  twelve  days  before  the  feast  of  St.  John, 
and  in  the  eightii  year  of  her  government  of  Mercia.  She 
was  buried  at  Gloucester,  in  the  porch  of  St.  Peter's.  This 
princess  is  said  to  have  been  so  powerful  that  she  was 
sometimes  called  not  only  lady,  or  queen,  but  king  also, 
in  deference  to  her  great  excellence  and  majesty  ^.  Some 
have  thought  and  said  that  if  she  had  not  been  suddenly 
snatched  away  by  death,  she  would  have  surpassed  the  most 
valiant  of  men.  The  memory  of  so  much  eminence  would 
supply  materials  for  endless  song ;  it  demands,  at  least,  a 
short  tribute  in  verse : — 

**  Heroic  Elflede  !  great  in  martial  &me, 
A  man  in  valoar,  woman  though  in  name ; 
Thee  warlike  hosts,  thee^  nature  too  obey'd, 
Conqu'ror  o'er  both,  though  born  by  sex  a  maid. 
Chang'd  be  thy  name,  such  honour  triumphs  bring, 
A  queen  by  title,  but  in  deeds  a  king. 
Heroes  before  the  Mercian  heroine  '  quail'd : 
Caesar  himself  to  win  such  glory  fiurd." 

King  Edward,  in  the  twenty-sixth*  year  of  his  reign, 
deprived  Elfwina,  the  sister '  of  Ethelfleda,  of  the  lordship 
of  Mercia,  to  which  she  had  succeeded ;  the  king  regarding 
more  the  policy  than  the  justice  of  the  act.     Subsequently, 

'  Two  MSS.  of  the  Saxon  Chronicle  place  it  in  918;  the  yersion  gene- 
xally  received  is  922. 

*  Ethelfleda  seems  to  have  possessed  a  large  share  of  her  brother  Alfred's 
spirit.  She  was  indeed  an  extraordinary  woman,  at  a  period  when  even 
manly  virtues  were  rare.  Henry  of  Huntingdon  does  justice  to  her  great 
qualities,  respect  for  which  must  be  my  apology  for  the  length  at  which.  I 
£ave  attempted  to  clear  up  her  history. 

*  "  Virgo  virago."  Our  author  unaccountably  lost  sight  of  her  real  po- 
sition. 

*  Edward's  reign  lasted  only  24  years ;  see  note  3  on  p.  167.  From  the 
death  of  King  Edward,  known  in  History  as  Edward  the  Elder,  to  the  year 
1000,  very  few  chronological  notices  are  found  in  Henry  of  Huntingdon's 
History. 

^  Elfwina  was  the  daughter  of  Ethelfleda,  by  Ethered.  She  is  named 
Elgiva  by  Roger  of  Wendover,  who  calls  her  the  only  child,  and  gives  a 
curious  reason  for  it. — Rog.  of  Wendover,  BohrCs  Edition^  vol.  i.  p.  243. 


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A.D.  924.]  KING  ATHELSTAN.  169 

he  built  a  burg  at  Gladmuth^.  He  died  not  long  after- 
wards at  Ferandime^,  and  Edward,  his  son,  expired  very 
shortly  after,  at  Oxford;  and  they  were  both  biuied  at 
Winchester.  Not  long  before,  Sihtric,  king  of  Northiunbria, 
had  slain  his  brother  Nigel;  after  which  outrage  King 
Eeginald  won  York. 

[a.d.  924.]  Athelstan,  the  son  of  Edward,  was  elected 
king  of  tlie  Mercians,  and '  crowned  at  Kingston ;  whose 
reign  was  short,  but  not  the  less  illustrious  for  noble  deeds ; 
who  fought  with  the  bravest,  but  was  never  conquered. 
For  in  the  course  of  the  year  following'^,  Guthfrith,  king  of 
the  Danes,  brother  of  Reginald,  the  king  already  named, 
having  provoked  him  to  war,  was  defeated  and  put  to  flight, 
and  slain.  Not  long  afterwards,  by  a  stroke  of  adverse 
fortune,  Athelstan  lost  his  brother  Edwin,  the  Eiheling,  a 
young  prince  of  great  energy  and  high  promise,  who  was 
imhappily  drowned  at  sea.  After  these  events  ^  King 
Athelstan,  resolving  to  subjugate  entirely  the  heathen 
Danes  and  faithless  Scots,  led  a  very  large  army,  both  by 
sea  and  land,  into  Northumbria  and  Scotland,  and  as  there 
was  no  one  able  to  offer  resistance,  he  overran  the  country, 
pillaging  it  at  his  will,  and  then  retired  in  triumph. 

In  the  year  of  grace  945*,  and  in  the  fourth  year  of 
his  reign,  King  Athelstan  fought  at  Brunesburh*'  one  of 
the  greatest  battles  on  record  against  Anlaf,  king  of 
Ireland,  who  had  imited  his  forces  to  those  of  the 
Scots  and  Danes  settled  in  England.  Of  the  grandeur  of 
this  conflict,  English  writers  have  expatiated  in  a  sort  of 
poetical  description',  in  which  they  have  employed  both 

*  Or  Clede-mnth,  the  mouth  of  the  Cleddy,  in  Pembrokeshire.  Henry  of 
Huntingdon  strangely  takes  no  other  notice  of  the  three  last  busy  years  of 
Edward's  reign. 

*  Famdon,  in  Northamptonshire,  which  was  in  Mercia ;  not  Farringdon, 
in  Berkshire,  and  part  of  Wessex,  as  Gibson  and  others  interpret  it. 

«  The  expulsion  of  Guthfrith  (from  Yorki)  did  not  take  place  till  927. 
*■  Edwin  was  drowned  a.d.  933.    The  expedition  into  Scotland  took  place 
the  same  year. 

*  This  should  be  937,  the  fourteenth,  not  the  fourth,  year  of  Athelstan. 

*  Ingram  in  his  map  places  Bruneburg  or  Brunanburg  in  Lincolnshire, 
Bear  the  Trent.     Ingram  and  Giles  call  it  Brumby. 

'  Henry  of  Huntingdon  refers  to  the  metrical  account  of  this  battle,  in- 


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170  BENBT  OF  HUNTINODON.  [BOOK  V. 

foreign  words  and  metaphors.  I  therefore  give  a  faithful 
version  of  it,  in  order  that,  by  translating  their  recital 
almost  word  for  word,  the  majesty  of  the  language  may 
exhibit  the  ms^estic  achioTements  and  the  heroism  of  the 
English  nation. 

"  At  Bninesburh,  Athelstan  the  king,  noblest  of  chie&, 
giver  of  collars^,  emblems  of  honour,  with  his  brother 
Edmund,  of  a  race  ancient  and  illustrious,  in  the  battle, 
smote  with  the  edge  of  the  sword.  The  offspring  of 
Edward,  the  departed  king,  cleft  through  the  defence  of 
shields,  struck  down  noble  warriors.  Their  innate  valour, 
derived  from  their  fethers,  defended  their  coimtiy,  its  trea- 
siures  and  its  hearths,  its  wealth  and  its  precious  things, 
from  hostile  nations,  in  constant  wars.  The  nation  of  tbe 
Irish,  and  the  men  of  ships,  rushed  to  the  mortal  fight; 
the  hills  re-echoed  their  shouts.  The  warriors  struggled 
from  the  rising  of  the  sim,  illuminating  depths  witi^  its 
cheerful  rays,  &e  candle  of  God,  the  torch  of  the  Creator, 
till  the  hour  when  the  glorious  orb  sunk  in  the  west. 
There  numbers  fell,  Danish  by  race,  transfixed  with  spears, 
pierced  through  their  shields;  and  with  them  feU  the 
Scottish  men,  weary  and  war-sad.  But  chosen  bands  of 
the  West-Saxons,  the  live-long  day,  imshrinking  from  toil, 
struck  down  the  ranks  of  their  barbarous  foe ;  men  of  hi^ 
breeding  handled  the  spear,  Mercian  men  hurled  their 
sharp  darts.  There  was  no  safety  to  those  who  with 
Anlaf,  coming  over  the  sea,  made  for  the  land  in  woocten 
ships,  fated  to  die !  Five  noble  kings  fell  on  the  field,  in 
the  prime  of  their  youth,  pierced  with  the  sword ;  seven 
earls  of  King  Anlaf,  and  Scots  without  number.  Then 
were  the  Northmen  quelled  in  their  pride.  For  not  a  few 
came  over  the  sea  to  the  contest  of  war ;  while  but  a  few 
heard  their  king's  groans,  as,  borne  on  the  waves,  he  flkl 

serted  in  the  Saxon  Chronicle,  which  contains  seyeral  other  such  relics  of 
ancient  poetry.  His  "  version  "  is  tolerably  "  faithful/'  as  &r  as  it  goes,  ex- 
liibiting  the  character  and  much  of  the  spirit  of  the  original  poem ;  but  it  is 
much  curtailed.  The  historian  adopts  a  sort  of  rythm  suited  to  the  shatt 
lines  of  the  Anglo-Saxon  poem,  which  it  is  attempted  to  preserre  in  the  pre- 
wnt  translation. 

'  "  Torquium  dator."  The  Anglo-Saxon  phrase  is  heals-ffiva,  "girer  of 
bracelets." 


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A.D.  937.]  BATTLE  OF  BBUNEBUB0.  171 

from  the  rout  Then  was  fierce  Froda^,  chief  of  the 
Northmen,  Constantine  with  him,  king  of  the  Scots,  stayed 
in  his  hoasting,  when  corpses  were  strewed  on  that  battle- 
field, sad  remnant  left  of  kindred  bands,  relations  and 
fiiends,  mixed •  with  the  common  folk  slain  in  the  fight; 
there,  too,  his  dear  son  was  stretched  on  the  plain,  man- 
gled with  womids.  Nor  could  Danish  Gude^  hoary  in 
wisdom,  soft  in  his  words,  boast  any  longer.  Nor  could 
Anlaf  himself,  with  the  wreck  of  his  troops,  vaunt  of  suc- 
cess in  the  conflicts  of  war,  in  the  clashing  of  spears,  in 
crossing  of  swords,  in  councils  of  wise  men.  Mothers 
and  nurses  wailed  for  their  dear  ones,  playing  the  game  of 
ill-fated  war  with  the  sons  of  King  Edward. 

"  The  Northmen  departed  in  their  nailed  barits,  and 
Anlaf,  defeated,  over  the  deep  sought  his  own  land,  sorrow- 
ing much.  Then  the  two  brothers  Wessex  regained,  leav- 
ing behind  them  reUcs  of  war,  the  flesh  of  the  slain,  a 
bloody  prey.  Now  the  black  raven  with  crooked  beak,  the 
livid  toad,  and  eagle  and  kite,  the  dog  and  the  wolf,  with 
tawny  hide,  gorged  themselves  freely  on  the  rich  feast.  No 
battle  ever  was  fought  in  this  land  so  fierce  and  so  bloody, 
since  the  time  that  came  hither,  over  the  broad  sea,  Saxons 
and  Angles,  the  Britons  to  rout;  famous  war-smiths,  who 
struck  down  the  Welsh,  defeated  their  nobles,  seized  on 
the  land." 

I  now  return  to  the  history,  which  has  been  interrupted 
lor  the  sake  of  introducing  this  interesting  record. 

[a.d.  940.]  King  Athelstan,  after  a  reign  of  fourteen 
years,  was  no  more  seen  among  men.  He  was  succeeded 
by  his  son  [brother]  Edmund,  who  reigned  six  years  and  a 
half.  In  the  fourth  year  of  his  reign,  the  king  of  the 
Franks  treacherously  put  to  death  William,  the  son  a£ 
Rollo,  who  obtained  possession  of  Normandy,  a  province  of 
France,  and  was  the  foimder  of  the  Norman  nation. 

King  Edmund  led  his  army  into  that  part  of  Mercia 

1  Hylde-rme  is  the  name  given  to  this  worthy  in  the  original  poem. 
Houy  of  Huntingdon  haa  transferred  another  word  from  ita  place  and  made 
it  a  proper  name. 

*  The  old  chief*  is  called  Inwidda-Inwood  in  the  Saxon  poem.  Henry 
of  Huntingdon,  probably  not  very  well  versed  in  the  old  English  tongue, 
makes  Gude^  ''fight,"  into  ene  of  the  heroes. 


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17/J  HENRY   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  V, 

which  had  been  long  subject  to  the  heathens,  as  far  as  the 
broad  river  Humber,  conquering  the  Danes,  and  triinn- 
phantly  recovering  the  "  Five  Burghs,"  Lincoln,  Leicester, 
Stamford,  Nottingham,  and  Derby ;  and,  utterly  extirpating 
the  Danes,  who  even  at  that  time  were  called  Normans,  he 
purified  those  towns  from  heathenism,  and,  by  God's  grace, 
restored  to  them  the  light  of  the  gospel  At  that  time 
[a.d.  942]  died  King  Anlaf,  before  mentioned.  Afterwards, 
King  Edmund  received  another  Danish  king,  named  Anlaf, 
in  baptism ;  who  yielded  as  much  to  the  force  of  arms,  as 
to  his  convictions  of  the  truth  of  the  faith.  A  few  days 
afterwards,  he  also  received,  from  the  hand  of  the  bishop, 
Keginald  king  of  York,  who  is  already  spoken  of  as  having 
subjected  that  city. 

After  King  Edward's  return  into  Wessex,  where  he  was 
received  in  great  triumph,  these  Danish  kings,  Anlaf,  son 
of  Sihtric,  and  Keginald,  son  of  Guthfrith,  broke  the  treaty 
of  peace  they  had  entered  into,  and  ravaged  that  part  of  the 
kingdom  which  they  had  ceded  to  Edward ;  therefore  that 
most  warlike  king  declared  war  against  them,  and  having 
assembled  an  army,  marched  into  Northumbria,  from  which 
he  not  only  expelled  both  those  kings,  but  for  the  first 
time  annexed  the  kingdom  of  Northiunbria  to  his  own 
kingdom  of  Wessex.  The  year  following,  he  ravaged  and 
overran  the  whole  of  Cumberland;  but  inasmuch  as  he 
was  unable  permanently  to  subjugate  the  people  of  that 
province,  a  treacherous  and  lawless  race,  he  made  it  over  to 
Malcolm,  king  of  Scotland,  on  the  terms  of  his  granting 
him  aid  both  by  land  and  sea. 

[a.d.  946.]  When  Edward,  this  victorious  king,  had 
reigned  gloriously  six  years  and  a  half,  all  things  happening 
prosperously,  and  he  being  sole  king  of  all  England,  he 
was  traitorously  stabbed  on  St.  Augustine's  day;  an  im- 
pious murder,  which  will  be  held  in  detestation  through  all 
ages.  Thus  snatched  away  by  a  sudden  death,  may  Christ, 
in  his  mercy,  be  gracious  to  him ! 

Edred,  brother  of  King  Edmimd  ^  and  son  [brother,  also] 
of  King  Athelstan,  succeeded,  and  the  same  year  he  led  a 
strong  party  of  troops  into  Northumbria,  the  people  of 

^  Edmund's  children  were  minors. 


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A.D.  946-955.]         KING  edbed's  beign.  17B 

which  submitted  with  impatience  to  the  yoke  of  his  do- 
minion, and  completely  subjugated  it  He  then  advanced 
his  standards  into  Scotland ;  but  the  Scots  were  so  tennfied 
at  his  approach,  that  they  submitted,  without  recourse 
being  had  to  arms.  Both  the  Northumbrians  and  the 
Scots  confirmed  by  oaths  the  fealty  due  from  them  to  their 
liege  lord ;  oaths  which  were  not  long  respected :  for  after 
Edred's  return  to  the  southern  part  of  his  dominions,  Anlaf  ^, 
who  had  been  expelled  from  Northumbria,  returned  thither 
[a.d.  949]  with  a  powerful  fleet.  He  was  welcomed  by  his 
adherents,  and  reinstated  in  his  kingdom,  which  he  held 
by  the  strong  hand  for  four  years.  But  in  the  fourth  year, 
the  Northumbrians,  with  their  usual  fickleness,  expelled 
Anlaf,  and  raised  to  the  throne  Eric,  the  son  of  Harold. 
His  tenure  of  the  kingdom  was  also  short.  For  the  glorious 
king,  Edred,  resumed  again  his  sway  in  Northumbria,  in 
the  eighth  year  of  his  reign ;  as  the  people  of  that  country, 
never  long  submissive  to  the  same  master,  after  Eric,  the 
son  of  Harold,  had  been  king  three  years,  dismissed  him 
as  carelessly  as  they  had  received  him ;  and,  inviting  King 
Edred,  voluntarily  replaced  him  on  the  throne. 

[a.d.  955.]  Edred,  an  exemplaiy  and  'powerM  king, 
having  at  length  become  sole  king  over  all  the  provinces  of 
England,  yielded  to  fate  in  the  eighth  year  from  that  in 
which  he  had  assimied  the  crown.  Edv^,  the  son  of  King 
Edmund,  succeeded  Edred  in  the  monarchy  of  all  England^. 
For  Edmund  was  the  son  [brother]  of  Athelstan,  a  most  vir- 
tuous king,  who  was  son  of  Edward,  whose  reign  was  prosper- 
ous, the  son  of  Alfred  the  unconquered  warrior,  the  son  of 
Ethelwulf  of  paternal  excellence,  who  was  son  of  Egbert, 
who  first  raised  the  kingdom  of  Wessex  to  the  ascendancy, 
exalting  it  by  his  valour  and  poHcy  to  the  monarchy  of 
all  England.  Edmund  had  two  sons,  Edwy  the  first-bom, 
and  Edgar  the  youngest,  who  succeeded  to  the  throne  in 

*  The  third  of  the  Danish  kings  of  this  name  in  these  times  :  Anlaf,  son 
of  Guthfrith,  Anlaf,  son  of  Sithric,  and  this  one,  Anlaf  Cuaran. 

'  One  MS.  of  the  Saxon  Chronicle  allots  Wessex  to  Edwy,  and  Mercia 
to  Edgar;  and  the  latter  may  have  held  his  kingdom  in  some  sort  of  suh- 
jection  to  his  elder  brother,  as  the  paramount  king.  Roger  of  Wendorer 
says  that  the  Mercians  revolted  from  Edwy,  and  chose  Edgar  king. 


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174  HENRY   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOZ  V. 

the  order  of  their  bhlh.  In  the  second  year  of  Edwy's 
reign,  Wulfstan,  the  Archbishop  [of  York],  departed  this 
hfe.  This  king  wore  the  diaiiem  not  unworthily^;  but 
after  a  prosperous  and  becoming  commencement  of  his 
reign,  its  happy  promise  was  cut  short  by  a  premature 
death. 

[a.d.  959.]  Edgar  the  peaceful,  the  brother  of  the  last- 
named  king,  reigned  sixteen  years.  In  his  days  this  land 
received  great  benefits,  and  through  the  mercy  of  God, 
which  he  merited  to  the  best  of  his  power,  his  whole  reign 
was  ti*anquil.  For  he  widely  establi^ed  the  Christian  faith 
in  his  dominions,  and,  by  his  bright  example,  encouraged 
fiiiitfulness  in  good  works.  Beloved  boUi  by  God  and 
man,  his  great  concern  was  to  promote  peace  among  all 
the  nations  of  his  realm,  nor  did  any  of  his  predecessors 
hold  the  reins  of  power  so  quietly  and  so  happily.  Honour- 
ing God's  name,  and  studying  his  law,  he  wiUingly  learnt 
and  gladly  taught  it,  and  was  ready  both  by  word  and  deed 
to  invite  his  people  to  the  practice  of  virtue.  But  the 
Divine  Providence  rewarded  his  servant  Edgar  for  his  good 
deeds,  not  in  the  next  life  only,  but  even  in  the  present ; 
for  the  several  subordinate  kings,  and  the  chiefs  and  people 
of  all  the  nations  of  the  land,  submitted  to  him  voluntanly 
in  fear  and  love  without  a  struggle,  and  without  any  hostile 
movements.  Meanwhile,  the  fame  of  the  king's  illustrious 
character  was  spread  through  all  countries,  and  foreignas 
came  to  witness  his  glory  and  to  hear  the  words  of  wisdom 
firom  his  mouth.  In  one  thing  only  he  erred,  establishing 
too  secm-ely  the  heathens  who  were  settled  under  him  in 
this  country,  and  being  too  partial  and  giving  too  much 
countenance  to  strangers  who  were  attracted  here^.  But 
nothing  human  is  altogether  perfect 

[a.d.  963.]  In  the  fifth  year  of  the  leign  of  King  Edgar 

'Both  Henry  of  Huntingdon  and  the  Saxon  Chronicle  are  silent  on  the 
subject  of  the  unhappy  and  tragic  passages  of  Edwy's  reign,  related  or  invented 
by  later  writers.  Roger  of  Wendover  blackened  his  memory  with  all  the 
virulence  with  which  some  of  the  monkish  writers  treated  it. 

'  It  was  Edgar's  wise  policy  to  conciliate  the  Northmen  settled  in  Eng- 
land, and  to  encourage  colonization  by  their  countrymen.  The  panegyric  is 
borrowed  from  a  metrical  compositiun  in  honour  of  iKing  Edgar  in  the  Saxon 
Chronicle. 


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A.D.  969-975.]  BEIGN   OF  EDGAR.  175 

the  peaceful,  the  venerable  Ethelwold  was  happily  raised  to 
the  see  of  Winchester.  This  prelate,  in  the  second  year  of 
his  episcopacy,  ejected  some  canons  from  the  old  monasteiy 
of  Winchester,  who  observed  the  rules  of  their  order  with 
sloth  and  negligence,  and  introduced  monks  in  their  stead. 
This  [conventual]  church  has  been  taken  down  in  my  time, 
because  it  was  too  near  to  the  mother-church,  which  is  the 
bishop's  cathedral:  with  the  consent,  therefore,  of  the 
bishop  and  abbot,  a  new  monastery^  has  been  foimded  with- 
out the  city  walls.  This  excellent  prelate,  Ethelwold,  was 
diligent  in  fencing  about  the  Lord's  vineyard,  and,  setting 
deep  the  roots  of  charity,  in  diverting  from  it  the  paths  of 
unrighteousness.  For  he  sowed  good  counsels,  so  that  by 
his  advice.  King  Edgar  made  new  plantations,  and  nursed 
up  offshoots  of  young  growth  most  acceptable  to  God.  The 
king  built  the  abbey  of  Glastonbury;  he  ornamented 
the  abbey  of  Abingdon,  near  the  Thames ;  he  built  up  the 
abbey  at  Biu-ch,  near  Stamford,  and  founded  an  abbey  at 
Thomey,  near  Burch,  on  a  very  pleasant  spot,  though  in 
the  midst  of  the  Fens.  At  the  instance  also  of  Bishop 
Ethelwold,  Ailwin,  the  king's  ealdorman,  founded  Eamsey 
Abbey  on  a  fair  island  in  the  same  Fens.  These  Fens  are 
of  wide  extent,  and  the  prospect  is  beautiful ;  for  they  are 
watered  by  numerous  flowing  streams  varied  by  many  lakes, 
both  great  and  small,  and  are  verdant  with  woods  and 
islands.  Within  them  are  the  church  of  Ely,  Eamsey 
Abbey,  Catteric  Abbey,  Thomey  Abbey,  and  the  abbey  of 
Croyland.  In  the  neighbourhood  are  ^e  abbey  of  Peter- 
borough, Spalding  Abbey,  the  church  of  St.  Ivon  upon  the 
Ouse,  a  river  in  Huntingdonshire,  and  the  church  of  St, 
Egidius  on  the  Granta  in  Cambridgeshire,  with  the  church 
of  the  Holy  Trinity  at  Thetford. 

[a.d.  968.]  In  the  eleventh  year  of  his  reign.  King  Edgar 
commanded  the  Isle  of  Thanet  to  be  wasted,  because  the 
inhabitants  had  treated  his  royal  rights  witii  contempt. 
But  it  was  done  not  as  by  a  raging  enemy,  but  by  a  king 
inflicting  punishment  for  evil  deeds.  In  the  thirteenth 
year  of  his  reign.  King  Edgar  was  crowned  at  Bath  on  the 
day  of  Pentecost ;  and  soon  afterwards  he  went  at  the  head 

*  The  "  new  monastery  "  was  built  A.i>.  1110. 


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176  HENBT  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  V. 

of  his  army  to  Chester,  where  six^  kings  came  to  meet  hhn, 
all  of  whom  were  subordinate  to  him,  and  who  pledged 
him  then*  fealty,  and  the  service,  due  both  by  land  and  sea, 
to  his  imperial  crown. 

[a.d.  975.]  Edgar  the  peaceful,  that  glorious  king,  that 
second  Solomon,  in  whose  time  no  foreign  army  landed  in 
England,  to  whose  dominion  the  English  kings  and  chiefs 
were  subject,  to  whose  power  even  the  Scots  bent  their  necks, 
after  a  reign  of  sixteen  years  and  two  months,  died  as  hap- 
pily as  he  had  lived.  For  he  could  not  die  unhappily  who 
had  lived  well,  who  had  dedicated  so  many  chm-ches  to 
God,  and  who  had  in  a  short  time  founded  so  many 
estabUshments  consecrated  in  perpetuity  to  pious  uses. 
The  more  zealously  the  societies  of  his  foundation  offer 
without  ceasing  their  praises  to  God,  the  higher  will  be  the 
degree  of  glory  to  which  the  blessed  king  will  be  advanced 
in  heaven ;  in  whose  praise  my  Muse  prompts  some  short 
verse,  which  his  worth  demands  : — 

"  Blest  in  his  kingdom's  wealth,  his  people's  love. 
The  royal  Edgar  soars  to  realms  above. 
Just  laws  he  gave,  and  with  the  arts  of  peace, 
Made  qrime,  and  violence,  and  war  to  cease. 
Another  Solomon,  his  fame  extends 
To  distant  lands,  and  time  that  never  ends. 
New  temples  crown'd  the  hills  at  his  command, 
Heap'd  with  rich  gifts  the  sacred  altars  stand ; 
And  hoary  minsters  own'd  his  lib'ral  hand. 
Wisely  he  learnt  the  true  and  false  to  scan. 
And  with  eternity  weigh  life's  short  span." 

[a.d.  975.]  Edward,  the  son  of  Kmg  Edgar,  who  is 
called  St.  Edgar,  succeeded  to  his  father's  kingdom.  In  the 
beginning  of  his  reign  there  appeared  a  comet  which, 
doubtless,  foretold  the  great  famine  which  followed  in  the 
year  ensuing.  For  at  fiiat  time  a  certain  dissolute  noble, 
Elfhere  by  name,  with  the  consent  and  the  help  of  a  powerful 
faction^,  destroyed  some  of  the  abbeys  which  King  Edgar 
and  Bishop  Ethelwold  had  founded.     Wherefore  the  Lord 

*  Other  accounts  make  the  number  of  these  tributary  princes  eight ;  the 
kings  of  the  Scots,  Cumbrians,  Mona  and  the  Isles,  South  Wales,  two  of 
North  Wales,  Galway,  and  Westmoreland. 

*  Elfhere  was  earldorman  or  governor  of  the  late  kingdom,  and  now  im- 
portant province,  of  Merda. 


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A.D.  978.]        MURDER  OF  ST.  EDWARD.  177 

was  moved  to  anger,  and,  as  of  old,  brought  evil  on  the 
land. 

In  the  fourth  year  of  the  reign  of  St.  Edward,  all  the 
great  men  of  the  English  nation  fell  frpm  a  loft  at  Calne, 
except  St.  Dunstan,  who  supported  himself  by  taking  hold 
of  a  beam.  Some  of  them  were  much  hurt,  and  some  were 
killed.  It  was  a  sign  from  the  Most  High  of  the  impending 
forfeiture  of  his  favour  by  the  assassination  of  the  king,  and 
of  the  evils  it  would  bring  on  them  from  various  nations. 

[a.d.  978.]  St.  Edward,  the  king,  after  reigning  five  years, 
was  treasonably  slain  by  his  own  family  at  Corfe-gate,  at 
even-tide ;  and,  carrying  to  the  grave  their  malice  towards 
him  in  life,  he  was  buried  at  Wareham  without  royal 
honours,  that  his  name  might  perish  also.  But  here  it  was 
found  that  the  depraved  and  dark  coimsels  of  man  are  of 
no  avail  against  the  Divine  Providence.  For  he  who  was 
was  rejected  by  traitors  on  earth  was  received  with  glory  by 
God  in  heaven,  and  he  whose  nsune  his  mm-derers  sought  to 
obliterate  had  his  memory  made  for  ever  illustrious  by  the 
Lord.  Whereupon  the  Lord  was  a^ain  moved  to  anger, 
more  than  He  was  wont,  and  determined  to  visit  the  wicked 
nation  with  a  grievous  calamity.  It  is  reported  that  his 
stepmother,  that  is  the  mother  of  King  Ethelred,  stabbed 
him  with  a  dagger  while  she  was  in  the  act  of  offering  him 
a  cup  to  drink. 

Ethelred,  son  of  King  Edgar,  and  brother  of  Edward, 
was  consecrated  king  before  all  the  nobles  of  England  at 
Kingston.  An  evil  omen,  as  St.  Dimstan  interpreted  it, 
had  happened  to  him  in  his  infancy.  For  at  his  baptism 
he  made  water  in  the  font;  whence  the  man  of  God  pre- 
dicted the  slaughter  of  the  English  people  that  would  take 
place  in  his  time.  In  the  early  part  of  Ethelred's  reign,  the 
ealdorman  Elfere,  by  Divine  command,  translated  the  body 
of  St,  Edward  from  Wareham  to  Shaftesbury.  In  the 
third  year  of  King  Ethelred's  reign,  there  came  seven  ships 
of  the  Danes,  the  precursors  of  future  ravages ;  and  they 
plimdered  Hampshire.  After  that  Elfere,  the  ealdorman 
before  named,  died  and  was  succeeded  by  Alfric,  whom  the 
king  harshly  banished.  At  that  time  St.  Ethelwold,  the 
bishop  [of  Winchester],  father  of  the  monks  and  the  star 
of  the  English  church,  obtained  the  vision  of  the  Lord, 


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178  HBNBT  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  V. 

which  he  had  earnestly  desired.  Not  long  afterwards,  St. 
Dunstan  was  translated  from  the  darkness  of  earth  to  the 
glory  of  heaven.  When  these  two  great  hghts  of  the  Eng- 
Ush  nation  were  removed,  England  lost  the  armour  of  her 
defence,  and  was  exposed,  in  h^  desolation,  to  the 
threatened  wrath  <rf  the  Almighty.  The  successor  of  St 
Dunstan  was  Ethelgar,  who  was  succeeded  hy  Siric  the 
year  following ;  and  King  Ethelred  unmercifully  wasted  liie 
bishopric  of  Rodiester.  Then  the  Lord,  again  provoked  to 
wrath,  no  longer  deferred  what  He  had  designed ;  and  the 
Banes  landed  in  various  quarters  and  over^iadowed  Eng- 
land like  the  clouds  of  heaven  [a.d.  988].  In  one  quarti^ 
Watchet  was  plundered,  and  the  Danes,  advancing  from 
thence  *,  fell  in  with  a  body  of  English  troops,  and,  engaging 
them,  slew  Goda  their  leader,  and  crushed  that  part  of  the 
army  [a.d.  991].  In  another  quarter,  Ipswich  was  plimdered, 
and  Brithnoth,  the  ealdorman,  who  opposed  them  with  a 
great  force,  was  defeated  in  battle  and  slain,  and  his  troops 
dispersed. 

It  was  in  the  thirteenth  year  of  King  Ethelred,  that  the 
pernicious  counsel  of  Archbishop  Siric  was  adopted  by  the 
English,  that  tribute  should  be  pud  to  the  Danes  to  induce 
them  to  refrain  from  plunder  and  slaughter.  The  sum  paid 
was  ten  thousand  pounds.  And  this  infliction  has  con- 
tinued to  this  present  day,  and,  imless  God's  mercy  inter- 
poses, will  still  continue.  For  we  now  pay  to  our  kings, 
from  custom,  the  tax^  which  was  levied  by  the  Danes  from 
intolerable  fear.  After  this,  the  king  contrived  a  stratagem 
i^inst  the  Danes;  but  Alfric,  the  ealdorman,  who  viras 
banished  by  the  king  and  again  restored,  fcwewamed  them 
of  it.  It  is  truly  ^aid,  "The  man  whom  you  have  once 
seriously  injured,  you  should  not  afterwards  easily  trust." 
When,  therefwre,  the  royal  fleet,  under  the  command  of 
Elfric,  the  ealdorman,  and  Eorl  Thorold^  sailed  from 
London  to  intercept  the  Danes,  they,  having  been  fore- 
warned, made  their  escape.     Then  a  more  powerful  Danish 

1  Into  Deyonshire.  ^  Thii  tax  was  called  Dane^tld, 

'  Thorold  was  a  Dane  or  Norwegian,  as  appears  both  by  his  name  and 
title.  Long  before  this  time  naturalized  Northmen  fought  in  the  English 
ranks  against  new  inrasions  of  their  countrymen,  as  well  as  fiUed  the  bluest 
offices  in  church  and  state  nnder  the  English  kings. 


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A.D.  994.]  INVASION   OF   OLAVB   AND   SWETN.  179 

fleet  fell  in  with  the  royal  fleet,  and  a  naval  battle  ensued, 
in  which  many  of  the  Londoners  were  slain,  and  the 
Danes  captured  the  whole  armament,  witli  Elfric,  wh6  was 
on  board  and  had  the  command.  That  same  year,  St 
Oswald,  archbishop  of  York,  passed  to  his  heavenly  reward, 
and  Aldulf  succeeded  him.  Afterwards  Bamborough  was 
stormed  and  pillaged,  and  the  Danish  fleet  sailed  up  the 
Humber  and  ravaged  the  shores  on  both  sides,  in  Lindsey 
and  Northumbria.  An  En^ish  force  was  collected  and 
inarched  agcdnst  them,  but  as  soon  as  the  two  armies  met, 
Frene,  Godwin,  and  Fritiiegist,  the  English  commanders, 
gave  the  signal  for  flight  At  this  time  Ethelred  ordered 
Elfgar,  son  of  Elfric  the  ealdorman,  to  be  deprived  of  sight, 
thereby  increasing  the  odium  in  which  his  cruelty  was 
held.  Now,  also,  Ridiard  the  Second  succeeded  his  father, 
Biehard  the  Elder,  in  Normandy.  After  these  transactioiffi 
[aj>.  994],  Clave  and  Sweyn  came  up  to  London  on  the 
nativity  of  St.  Mary,  with  ninety-four  ships ;  but  by  the  aid 
of  the  blessed  Virgin,  the  Christians  were  deUvered  from 
iheir  heathen  foes ;  for  the  city  being  assaulted,  and  prepa- 
rations made  to  set  it  on  fire,  the  ass£ulants  were  repulsed  in 
great  conflision.  Frustrated  in  this  enterprise,  they  spread 
thanselves  through  Essex,  Kent,  Sussex,  and  Hampshire, 
procuring  horses  and  overrunning  the  country  more  fiercely 
than  usual,  and  carrying  everywhere  fire  and  sword.  Where- 
upon the  king  sent  messengers  to  them  with  a  promise  of 
ransom  and  provisions,  which  they  acc^ted,  and  spent  the 
winter  peaceaWy  at  [South]  Hampton.  King  Ethelred 
also  sent  for  Bang  Clave,  giving  hostages  for  his  safe  con- 
duct, and  entertained  him  honourably  at  Andover,  where 
he  received  him  at  confirmation  from  the  bishop's  hands, 
and  gave  him  many  rich  presents.  Upon  this,  Clave  pro- 
mised the  king  that  he  would  never  again  appear  in  arms 
on  the  English  territory,  whidi  promise  he  kept.  About 
tlmt  time,  Siric,  archbishop  [of  Canterbury],  died.;  aftar 
whom  Elfric  rec^ved  the  p«dl. 

[a.d.  995.]  In  the  nineteenth  year  of  King  Ethelred,  the 
Danes  -sailed  round  the  coast  of  Cornwall  into  the  Severn, 
and  pillaged  Devonshire  and  South  Wales.  They  also  landed 
at  Watchet,  laying  waste  the  country  with  fire  and  sword, 

N  a 


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]  80  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  •  [BOOK  V. 

Ketuming  from  thence  they  sailed  round  Penwith-stert^  to 
the  south  coast  and  entered  the  Tamar,  which  they  went 
up  as  far  as  Liddyfoyd,  committing  everything  to  the 
flames,  and  burning  Ordulfs  Minster  at  Tavistock.  After 
this  the  enemy  sailed  to  Frome-mouth,  and,  landing,  over- 
ran Dorsetshire  with  their  usual  success,  there  being  no 
resistance.  This  year  also  [a.d.  998]  they  established 
themselves  for  a  time  in  the  Isle  of  Wight,  drawing  their 
supplies  from  Hampshire  and  Sussex*  Afterwards  they 
entered  the  Thames  and  sailed  up  the  Medway  to  Ko- 
chester.  There  the  Kentish  men  assembled  and  gave 
them  battle ;  theur  attack  was  spirited,  but  the  DaneSj  who 
were  ininred  to  constant  war,  repulsed  it  and  remained 
masters  of  the  field. 

[a.d.  1000.]  Now  King  Ethelred  assembled  a  powerful 
army  and  marched  mto  Cumberland,  which  was  at  that 
time  the  stronghold  of  the  Danes,  and  he  vanquished  them 
in  a  great  battle,  and  laid  waste  and  pillaged  almost  all 
Cumberland.  After  this  a  party  of  the  Danes  landed  at 
Exmouth  and  assaulted  the  town,  but,  meeting  with  a  de- 
termined resistance,  they  drew  off.  Then  they  spread  them- 
selves over  the  country  under  their  constant  leaders.  Mars 
and  Vulcan.  The  Somersetshire  men  assembled  to  oppose 
them,  and  engaged  with  them  at  Penhoe,  but  the  Danes, 
whose  only  business  was  war,  had  the  advantage. 

This  Book,  which  relates  to  the  Danes,  though  not  too 
large  for  the  importance  of  the  subject,  will  now  be  brought 
to  a  close.  I  must,  however,  according  to  my  custom,  care- 
fully set  before  the  reader,  as  a  hght  for  his  guidance,  a 
short  summary  of  the  contents  of  the  present  Book. 

Of  the  kingdom  of  Kent,  there  is  little  to  be  said ;  inas- 
much as  Egbert,  the  king  of  Wessex,  after  expelling  Bal- 
dred,  retained  it  in  his  own  hands,  and  at  his  death  left  it 
to  his  [second]  son,  Athelstan.  After  the  death  of  Athel- 
stan,  the  kingdom  of  Kent  reverted  to  Ethelwulf,  his  [elder] 
brother,  who  was  also  king  of  Wessex ;  and  he  left  it  to  his 
[youngest]  son,  Ethelbert,  who,  on  the  death  of  his  brother 
Ethelbald,  five  years  afterwards,  inherited  also  the  kingdom 
of  Wessex,  in  which  Ethelbald  had  succeeded  Ethelwulf; 
BO  that  both  kingdoms  were  again  united  under  the  rule  of 
>  The  Land'f  End. 


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A.D.  1000.]  THE  KINGS  OF  WESSEX.  181 

Ethelbert,  and  were  never  again  separated.  This  suflSces 
with  respect  to  the  kingdom  of  Kent. 

The  following  summary  will  elucidate  the  history  of  the 
kingdom  of  Wessex  : — 

Ethelwulf  reigned  xix.  years.  He  was  defeated  by  the 
Danes  at  Charmouth,  but  gained  a  great  victory  over  them 
at  Ockley. 

Ethelbald,  his  son,  reigned  v.  yeai-s.  He  was  buried  at 
Sherbiun. 

Ethelbekt,  his  brother,  reigned  v.  years.  His  officers 
and  army  defeated  the  Danes  at  Winchester. 

Ethelred,  tlie  brother  of  the  two  last  kings,  reigned  v, 
years  and  a  little  more.  He  and  his  brother  Alfred  had  a 
sharp  encounter  with  the  Danes  at  Reading. 

Alfred,  his  brother,  reigned  xxviii.  years  and  a  half. 
His  acts  were  so  numerous  and  so  marvellous  that  nothing 
can  be  said  of  them  in  a  short  compass. 

Edward,  the  son  of  Alfred,  reigned  xxiv.  years.  He 
fought  against  the  Danes  in  Northumbria;  and  again  as 
they  evacuated  Mercia,  when  he  gained  a  glorious  victory 
and  slew  valiant  kings.  He  also  defeated  the  Danes  at 
Tettenhall,  and  reduced  Mercia. 

Athelstan,  the  son  of  Edward,  reigned  xiv.  years.  In  his 
time  was  fought  the  great  battle  of  Brunebiurh. 

Edmund,  tide  son  of  Athelstan,  reigned  vi.  years  and  a 
half.  He  took  fipom  the  Danes  the  "Five  Burghs,"  and, 
reducing  them  to  subjection,  added  Northumbria  to  his 
dominions. 

Edred,  the  brother  of  Edmund,  for  ix.  years  governed 
fortunately  all  the  divisions  of  England. 

Edwt,  the  son  of  Edmimd,  for  iv.  years  possessed  the 
same  dominions,  and  the  same  extent  of  power. 

Edgar,  son  of  Edmund,  reigned  xvi.  years  in  peace  and 
greater  glory  than  all  the  rest. 

St.  Edward,  the  son  of  Edgar,  reigned  v.*  years ;  his 
death  (though  sudden)  was  happy. 

Ethelred,  his  brother,  suffering  under  the  wrath  of 
God,  had  a  troublesome  reign.  Much  of  it  I  have  still  to 
relate. 

*  It  should  be  three  years ;  Edward  succeeded  his  fether  a.p.  975,  and 
was  killed  a.d.  978. 


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182  HENBT  OF  HUMTIHGDON.  [BOOK  V. 

A  short  notice  must  now  be  giTen  d  the  kingdom  of 
NoRTHUMBRiA.  In  the  time  of  Edielwulf,  Osbert  was  king 
there ;  but  his  subjects  ejected  him,  as  their  custom  was, 
and  elected  ^Ua  king.  Both  of  them  were  k'dled  by  the 
Danes,  and  for  many  years  a  succession  of  Danish  kings 
jpagned  in  Northumbria.  These  were  Healfdene,  GodfreS, 
Nigel,  Sitric,  Eeginald,  and  Olaf.  But  their  history  is  con- 
fused ;  at  one  time  we  find  a  single  king,  at  anodier  two, 
at  another  several  inferior  kings.  In  the  end,  the  kingdom 
fell  under  the  dominion  of  Edred,  king  of  Wessex,  and  his 
successors.  Thus  much  is  clear  concerning  the  kingdom 
of  Northumbria. 

A  short  account  must  be  given  of  the  kingdom  of  Mercia. 
Berthwulf,  king  of  Mercia,  in  the  third  ^  year  of  his  reign, 
was  driven  out  by  the  Danes.  Burrhed,  also,  after  reigning 
xxii.  years,  was  driven  from  his  kingdom.  The  Danes 
having  thus  subjugated  it,  they  allowed  Ceolwulf  to  hold  it ; 
but  afterwards  they  divided  it  into  several  small  portions. 
Part  of  the  territory,  and  the  lords  of  it,  were  still  subject 
to  the  laws  of  Wessex  At  length,  Edmimd,  king  of 
Wessex,  reduced  the  whole  of  it  imder  his  dominion.  We 
find,  then,  that  the  kingdom  of  Mercia  became  altogether  a 
dependency  of  the  crown  of  Wessex. 

The  kingdom  of  East-Anglia,  which,  as  we  have  already 
observed,  had  by  various  means  been  long  subjugated,  was 
either  held  by  the  kings  of  Kent  or  of  Wessex,  and  at  other 
times  by  some  one  or  by  various  persons  to  whom  they 
granted  it.  Thus  there  was  sometimes  a  single  king,  at 
others  many  subject  kings.  St.  Edmund  was  the  last  of 
the  English  kings  who  governed  East-Anglia  imder  the 
king  of  Wessex ;  when  he  was  slain,  Guthrum,  the  Dane, 
became  king  there ;  and  afterwards  the  Danes  divided  the 
kingdom  into  small  portions,  and  it  continued  under  their 
government  until  King  Edward  reduced  the  greatest  part 
of  it  to  submission  to  himself.  Thus  it  appears  how  the 
kingdom  of  East-Anglia  became  annexed  to  the  crown  of 
Wessex. 

I  now  come  to  treat  of  the  origin  and  the  causes  of  the 
coming  of  the  Normans  into  England. 

*  Thirteenth  year. 


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A.D.  1000.]  POLITICAL  STA:^  OF  ENQLAND.  IBS 


BOOK  VI. 

Ik  the  year  1000  from  our  Lord's  incarnation,  King  Ethel- 
red,  before  mentioned,  in  order  to  strengthen  himself  on 
the  throne,  formed  the  design  of  demanding  in  marriage 
^e  daughter  of  Eichard,  duke  of  Normandy.  For  he  was 
a  valiant  prince,  and  all-powerful  in  the  kingdom  of  France; 
while  the  English  king  was  deeply  sensible  of  his  own  and 
his  people's  weakness,  and  was  under  no  small  alarm  at 
the  calamities  which  seemed  impending.  It  is  clear  that 
these  were  the  work  of  God,  who  brings  evil  on  the  repro- 
bate. For  it  was  the  purpose  of  the  Almighty  to  distract 
and  afflict  the  English  nation,  whose  wickedness  called  for 
punishment ;  just  as  before  He  had  hiunbled  the  Britons, 
when  their  sins  accused  them.  He  therefore  prepared  a 
double  chastisement  and  a  snare,  as  it  were,  into  which 
they  might  fall  as  the  device  of  an  enemy.  And  thus  it 
was  that  while  on  the  one  hand  the  Danish  invasion  was 
raging,  and  on  the  other  the  Norman  alliance  was  springing 
up,  if  they  escaped  the  open  attacks  of  the  Danes,  they 
mi^t  not  have  the  firmness  to  break  the  meshes  in  which 
the  subtlety  of  the  Normans  would  entangle  them  un- 
awares. And  so  it  appeared  in  the  sequel,  when  from  this 
union  of  the  king  of  England  with  the  daughter  of  the 
Duke  of  Normandy,  the  Normans  justly,  according  to  the 
law  of  nations,  estabhshed  a  footing  in  England,  while 
they  vilified  it  Indeed,  a  certain  man  of  God  had  pre- 
dicted to  them  that,  on  account  of  the  enormity  of  their 
offences,  not  only  because  bloodshed  and  rebellion  were 
ever  in  their  thoughts,  but  also  because  they  abandoned 
themselves  to  gluttony  and  to  the  neglect  of  the  temples  of 
the  Lord,  a  tyranny  tiiey  UttJe  expected  would  come  upon 
them  fi-om  France,  which  should  for  ever  trample  their 
greatness  in  the  dust,  and  scatter  their  glory  to  the  winds, 
never  to  be  recovered.    He  also  predicted  that  not  ontj 


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184  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  VI. 

that  nation,  but  the  Scots  whom  they  despised,  would  lord 
over  them  to  their  merited  confusion.  He  predicted,  no 
less,  the  revolutions  of  the  coming  age ;  as  the  inconstancy 
which  lurked  in  men's  minds,  and  became  apparent  in 
their  acts,  was  eidiibited  by  the  endless  changes  of  their 
apparel  and  ornaments.  The  English  king  having  there- 
fore, witli  the  policy  before  adverted  to,  dispatched  an 
embassy  to  the  Duke  of  Normandy,  and  his  proposals 
being  accepted,  English  nobles  of  high  rank,  fitting  such 
an  employment,  were  sent  into  Normandy  at  the  appointed 
time  to  receive  and  bring  over  their  fature  lady;  and 
they  accordingly  conducted  her  with  royal  pomp  into 
England. 

Ijol  the  year  1002,  Emma^,  the  flower  of  Normandy,  came 
into  England,  and  was  crowned  and  received  the  title  pf 
queen.  After  her  arrival  the  king  was  so  elated  with  pride 
that  he  committed  a  breach  of  faith  by  giving  clandestine 
orders  tbat  all  the  Danes  who  were  living  peaceably  in 
England  should  be  treacherously  massacred  in  one  and  the 
same  day,  on  the  feast  of  St.  Brice.  I  have  heard  in  my 
youth  some  very  old  persons^  give  an  accoimt  of  this 
flagrant  outrage.  They  said  that  tibe  king  sent  with  secrecy 
into  every  town  letters,  according  to  which  the  English 
suddenly  rose  on  the  Danes,  everywhere  on  the  same  day 
and  at  the  same  hour,  and  either  put  them  to  the  sword,  or, 
seizing  them  unawares,  burnt  them  on  the  spot^  The 
same  year,  the  king  banished  Leofsy,  the  ealdorman,  because 
he  had  slain  Effic,  the  king's  high-grieve. 

In  the  year  1003,  the  fury  of  the  Danes  was  inflamed, 

*  Emma  was  called  by  the  Saxons  Elfgiva. — Flor.  of  Wor, 
^  Henry  of  Huntingdon  now  approaches  his  own  times,  and  this  is  the 
earliest  instance  of  his  referring  to  what  may  be  called  contemporary  au- 
thority ;  but  as  he  was  bom  at  the  close  of  the  tenth  century,  his  informants 
must  have  been  from  80  to  90  years  of  age.  In  his  next  Book  he  professes 
to  relate  only  what  he  had  seen  himself  or  heard  from  eye-witnesses  ;  but, 
as  it  has  been  elsewhere  observed,  it  is  not  until  his  eighth  and  last  Book 
that  he  has  the  merit  of  being  an  original  and  contemporary  writer. 

'  Henry  of  Huntingdon  does  not  mention  the  motives  assigned  by  the 
Saxon  Chronicle  to  Ethelred  for  this  treacherous  massacre,  viz.  that  the 
Danes  were  conspiring  to  murder  the  king  and  his  "  witan."  It  may  there- 
fore be  concluded  that  he  did  not  believe  the  story,  and  he  conveys  the  im* 
pression  that  the  massacre  was  a  wanton  and  unjustifiable  cruelty. 


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A.D.  1003-4.]  NEW  DANISH  INVASIONS.  186 

like  fire  when  any  one  should  attempt  to  extmguish  it  with 
blood.  Overspreading  the  country  like  a  swarm  of  locusts, 
some  of  them  came  to  Exeter,  which  they  stormed  and 
sacked,  carrying  off  all  the  booty,  and  leaving  nothing  but 
its  ashes.  Hugh,  the  Norman,  Emma's  bailiff^  in  the 
town,  was  the  cause  of  its  destruction.  Then  the  people  of 
Hampshire  and  Wiltshire  assembled  to  combat  the  enemy ; 
but  when  they  were  closing  for  battle,  Elfric,  their  leader, 
feigned  sickness,  and  pretended  to  vomit,  and  thus  be- 
trayed those  whom  he  should  have  led;  so  true  is  the 
proverb,  "  "When  the  general  fails,  the  army  quails."^  The 
Danes,  taking  advantage  of  the  enemy's  weakness,  pursued 
them  as  far  as  Wilton,  which  they  piUaged  and  burnt,  and 
thence  went  to  Salisbuiy,  and  then  retired  in  trimnph  to 
their  ships  with  much  booty. 

In  the  fou^  year^,  Sweyn,  one  of  the  most  powerful  of 
the  Danish  kings,  for  whom  the  kingdom  of  England  was 
destined  by  Providence,  brought  over  a  numerous  fleet, 
and  came  to  Norwich,  which  he  sacked  and  burnt.  Then 
Ulfcytel,  the  chief  governor  of  the  province*,  who  was  taken 
unawares,  and  unprepared  to  offer  any  defence,  made  a 
treaty  with  the  invaders ;  but  three  weeks  afterwards,  during 
the  truce,  the  enemy's  army  decamped  privately,  and 
marched  to  Thetford,  which  they  also  plundered  and  burnt. 
Upon  learning  this,  Ulfcytel  took  post  with  a  small  band 
in  ambush  for  the  enemy,  as  at  break  of  day  they  were 
retiring  to  their  ships ;  but  though  he  attacked  them  reso- 

*  Henry  of  Huntingdon  calls  him  "  Vicecomes  ; "  the  Saxon  Chronicle, 
"  grieve,"  and  a  "  churl,"  which  Florence  of  Worcester  amplifies  into  "  eorL" 
We  see  here  the  first  firuits  of  the  Norman  alliance. 

^  An  old  English  proyerh.  The  reader  may  like  to  see  the  original  text, 
Tvith  its  rhyme,  antithesis,  and  alliteration : — 

"  Donne  se  heretoga  vacad, 
Donne  bith  eall  se  here  gehindrad." 
Literally — 

"  When  the  army-leader  is  sick. 
Then  all  the  army  are  hindered." — See  Sax,  Chron, 

^  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  for  the  sake  of  brevity,  reckons  from  a.d. 
1000  during  the  rest  of  Ethelred's  reijfn. 

*  East-Anglia.  Ulfcytel  was  of  Danish  extraction ;  the  Danish  colonists 
were  still  predominant  in  the  east,  the  centre,  and  the  north  of  England. 


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186  HEKSY   OF  HUlVTIKOPOlf.  [BOOK  YI 

lately,  and  held  them  long  in  check,  his  force  was  too  weak 
to  cut  off  their  retreat 

In  the  fifth  year,  the  Danes  sailed  for  their  own  country; 
hnt  meanwhile  there  was  no  lack  of  calamity  to  the  Ee^- 
lish,  for  they  were  visited  with  a  desolating  famine,  heyond 
any  known  in  the  memory  of  man. 

In  the  sixth  year,  the  audacious  Sweyn  reappeared  c^ 
Sandwich,  with  a  powerful  fleet  He  was  accompanied  hy 
his  three  usual  attendants,  Are,  slaughter,  and  pillage  ;  and 
all  England  trembled  before  him,  like  the  rustling  of  a  bed 
of  reeds  shaken  by  the  west  wind.  The  king,  however, 
assembled  an  army,  and  k^t  the  £eld  all  Ihe  autunm, 
without  any  restdts;  for  the  aiemy,  playing  their  usual 
game,  eluded  his  attacks  by  taking  to  their  ships,  and 
making  descents  in  other  quarters.  But  in  the  beginning 
of  winter  they  stationed  themselves  in  the  Isle  of  Wight; 
and  as  it  was  said  by  the  prophet^,  "  I  will  turn  your  feasts 
into  mourning,"  at  Christmas  they  overran  Hampshire  and 
Berkshire,  as  far  as  Reading ;  from  thence  to  Cholsey ;  and 
from  thence  by  Ashdown  to  Cuckamsley  Hill^.  Feasting 
merrily  wherever  they  went  on  what  was  set  before  iheni, 
on  their  departure  ^ey  recompensed  their  entertainment 
by  the  slau^ter  of  their  hosts,  and  by  burning  the  houses 
in  which  they  had  received  hospitality.  The  Danes  re- 
tiring to  the  sea^oast  were  encountered  by  the  anny  of 
Wessex,  which  gave  Ihem  battle.  What,  however,  was  the 
result,  but  that  the  Danes  were  enriched  with  the  spoils  of 
the  conquered !  So  the  people  of  Winchester  beheld  the 
enemy's  army  passing  boldly  and  insolently  by  the  gates  of 
their  city,  and  conveying  to  the  sea  the  supplies  of  food 
which  ikey  had  collected  50  miles  inland,  together  with  the 
booty  which  had  been  the  fruit  of  their  victories.  Mean- 
while, King  Ethelred  lay  in  sorrow  and  perplexity  at  his 
manor  in  Shropshire,  where  he  was  often  sharply  wounded 
with  rumours  of  these  disasters. 

In  the  seventh  year,  the  king  and  "witan"  of  the  Eng- 
lish, perplexed  what  to  do  and  what  to  leave  undone,  at 
length  resolved,  by  common  consent,  to  make  terms  with 

>  Amos  TiiL  10.  ^  In  Berkshire. 


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AJ).  1009.]  THE   ENGLISH   FLEET  WKECJCED.  187 

the  enemj.  Thej  accordingly  paid  him  30,000Z.^  to 
secure  a  peace.  The  same  year,  £dric  was  appointed 
ealdorman  oyer  Mercia;  a  new  traitor,  hut  one  of  the 
hi^est  class. 

In  the  eighth  year,  which  was  the  thirtieth  of  Ethelred*s 
reign,  the  king  caused  a  fleet  to  he  fitted  out,  to  which  the 
whole  of  England  contrihuted  in  the  proportion  of  one  ship 
for  every  estate  of  310  hides ;  and  for  every  eight  hides,  a 
helmet  and  hreastplate  were  to  he  famished.  A  hide  of 
land  means  so^much  land  as  can  he  tilled  in  a  year  hy  one 
plough. 

In  the  ninth  year,  the  king  sait  messengers  to  the  Duke 
of  Normandy,  to  intreat  for  counsel  and  aid.  Meanwhile, 
the  fleet  just  mentioned  assembled  at  Sandwich,  with  well- 
armed  crews ;  there  had  never  before  been  so  large  a  naval 
armament  in  Biitain  in  the  time  of  any  man.  But  Pro- 
vidence finstrated  it.  Thus  it  happened:  the  king  had 
banished  Child- Wulnoth^  the  South-Saxon,  upon  which  he 
collected  20  ships,  and  began  to  pillage  the  country  near 
the  [south]  coast.  Then  Brightric  Ednc,  the  ealdorman's 
brother,  thinking  to  acquire  renown,  took  with  him  80 
ships  of  the  fleet  which  had  been  assembled,  and  vowed  to 
the  king  that  he  wotdd  bring  him  his  enemy  either  alive  or 
dead.  But  after  he  had  sailed,  a  most  tempestuous  wind 
drove  all  his  ships  ashore  as  wrecks,  and  Wulnoth  presently 
landed  and  burnt  them..  Struck  by  the  evil  tidings,  the 
rest  of  the  fleet  returned  to  London ;  the  army  also  broke 
up;  and  thus  the  toll  of  the  whole  English  nation  was 
fruitless.  And  now,  at  harvest  time,  a  fresh  and  innume- 
n^le  army  of  the  Danes  arrived  at  Sandwich,  and,  mareh- 

>  Florence  of  Worcester  and  Sim.  Durham,  36,000^  So  the  Saxon 
Chronicle,  according  to  one  MS.  and  Dr.  Giles's  version. 

'  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  expression  is  "  a  noble  youth."  Ingram  trans- 
lates the  phrase,  in  his  version  of  the  Saxon  Chronicle,  "the  South  Saxon 
knight "  [father  of  Barl  Godwin],  which  he  corrects  in  the  Appendix,  ob- 
gerving  that  child  was  a  title  given  to  an  heir  of  noble  rank,  as  aetheling 
was  properly  applied  to  those  of  royal  birth.  The  title  is  fiEuniliariaed  to  the 
modem  reader  by  the  pilgrimage  of  "  Childe  Harold.'*  It  occurs  again 
repeatedly  in  the  Saxon  Chronicle,  and  is  applied  to  the  heir  apparent  to  the 
throne ;  at  least  it  is  given  to  Edgar  ^theling.  Wnlfiioth  or  Wulnof  ig 
called  Ulfnadr  by  the  old  Scald  or  Saga  writer,  who  gives  a  romantic  account 
of  the  early  fortunes  of  Earl  Godwin^  who  afterwards  became  so  powerful. 


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188  HENRY  OF  HXTNTTNGDOK.  [BOOK  VI. 

ing  to  Canterbury,  would  soon  have  taken  it,  unless  the 
citizens  had  obtained  peace  by  payment  of  a  ransom  of 
3000/.  The  Danes  then  came  to  the  Isle  of  Wight,  and 
pillaged  Sussex,  Hampshire,  and  Berkshire.  But  King 
Ethelred,  having  mustered  the  whole  force  of  England, 
marched  to  intercept  them  as  they  returned ;  and  then  an 
end  would  have  been  put  to  their  savage  inroads,  had  not 
Edric,  the  ealdorman,  again  traitorous,  dissuaded  the  king 
from  fighting,  by  false  reports  and  fictitious  alarms.  After- 
wards, the  Danes,  countermarching,  fixed  their  winter 
quarters  near  the  Thames,  fi:om  whence  they  made  fi-equent 
assaults  on  London,  and  were  as  frequently  repulsed.  After 
Christmas  they  crossed  the  Chiltem^  to  Oxford,  which 
place  they  burnt,  and  then  retiring  established  themselves 
in  Kent.  Their  ships  were  brought  roimd  to  meet  them, 
and,  during  Lent,  they  employed  themselves  in  putting 
them  in  repair. 

[a.d.  1010.]  Li  the  tenth  year  the  Danes  landed  at 
Ipswich  on  Ascension  day,  and  their  army  attacked  Ulfcytel, 
who  governed  the  province ;  but  the  East-Anglians  incon- 
tinendy  fled.  The  Cambridgeslure  men,  however,  made  a 
brave  resistance ;  and  for  this  they  were  highly  honoured 
as  long  as  the  English  kings  filled  the  throne.  Their 
ranks  being  imflinchingly  engaged,  fearless  of  death, 
Athelstan,  Sie  king's  son-in-law,  and  Oswy,  and  Edwy 
Efy's  brother,  with  Wuliric  the  thane,  and  many  other 
chief  men,  were  slain.  But  while  the  English  gave  no 
thought  to  flight,  Turketil  Myre-head,  that  is,  "  Ant-head,'* 
first  began  it,  thereby  deserving  endless  disgrace.  The 
Danes,  being  victorious,  held  possession  of  East-Anglia  for 
three  months,  as  well  as  the  Fens  described  in  the  pre- 
ceding Book,  with  the  churches,  which  they  either  plundered 
or  biunt.  They  also  destroyed  Thetford  and  burnt  Cam- 
bridge; and  retreating  thence  over  the  hills,  through  a 
very  pleasant  coimtry  near  Balsham,  they  massacred  all 
whom  they  found  in  that  place,  tossing  the  children  on 
the  points  of  their  spears.  One  man,  however,  whose  name 
ought  to  have  been  recorded,  mounted  the  steps  to  the 
top  of  a  church-tower,  which  is  stiU  standing  there,  and  on 

»  The  Chiltem  HUla,  on  the  south-east  of  Oxfordshire. 


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A.D.  1011.]  DANISH  ASCENDANCY.  189 

this  vantage  post,  by  his  great  courage,  he  defended  him- 
self, single  handed,  against  the  enemy  ^.  Then  the  Danes, 
passing  through  Essex,  reached  the  Thames,  and  without 
lingering  there  pushed  their  advance  into  Oxfordshire  and 
Buckinghamshire,  and  so  to  Bedford  on  the  Ouse  and  to 
Tempsford.  The  river  Ouse  washes  three  fortified  places, 
which  are  the  chief  towns  of  the  counties  of  Bedford, 
Buckingham,  and  Himtingdon.  Himtmgdon,  that  is, 
"  the  hill  of  hunters,"  stands  on  the  site  of  Godmanchester, 
once  a  famous  city,  but  now  only  a  pleasant  village  on  both 
sides-  of  the  river.  It  is  remarkable  for  the  two  castles 
before  mentioned,  and  for  its  simny  exposure,  as  well  as  for 
its  beauty,  besides  its  contiguity  to  the  Fens,  and  the 
abundance  of  wild  fowl  and  animals  of  chase  ^.  At  the 
feast  of  St.  Andrew  they  proceeded  to  Northampton,  which 
they  burnt;  and  at  Christmas  they  crossed  the  Thames, 
and  rejoined  their  fleet. 

In  die  eleventh  year,  the  Danes,  after  ravaging  the  north 
side  of  the  Thames,  Cambridgeshire  and  Oxfordshire, 
Buckinghamshire,  Essex  and  Middlesex,  Hertfordshire  and 
Bedfordshire,  with  the  part  of  Huntingdonshire  which  is 
on  that  [south]  side  the  river  [Ouse] ;  and  after  plundering 
on  the  south  of  the  Thames,  Kent  and  Surrey,  Hastings 
and  Sussex,  Berkshire  and  Hampshire,  and  great  part  of 
Wiltshire,  laid  siege  to  Canterbury,  the  metropoUs  of  Eng- 
land, which  was  treacherously  surrendered  to  them  by 
Aylmer,  whose  life  Elphege,  the  archbishop,  had  saved. 
Having  gained  an  entry,  they  took  prisoners  Elphege,  the 
archbishop,  and  Bishop  Godwin'^  and  the  Abbess  Lefwine*, 

1  This  anecdote,  thougli  in  itself  unimportant,  seems  to  indicate,  among 
other  such  incidental  notices,  that  Henry  of  Huntingdon^  in  compiling  his 
history,  occasionally  made  use  of  traditionary  reports,  or  of  written  docu- 
ments now  lost.  The  attentive  inquirer  will  easily  discover  where  his  addi- 
tions to  the  Saxon  Chronicle,  the  staple  of  his  narrative,  are  merely  rhetorical 
embellishments,  and  where  new  &cts  are  introduced.  In  the  present 
instance,  the  retreat  over  the  hills  from  Cambridge^  and  the  defence  made 
from  Balsham  church-tower,  are  not,  we  believe,  noticed  by  any  other 
ancient  writer.  At  the  same  time  the  account  of  the  proceedings  of  the 
Danes  in  the  present  year  is  otherwise  less  circumstantial,  as  is  often  the 
cage,  than  that  of  the  Chronicle. 

'  The  Archdeacon  of  Huntingdon  takes  occasion  to  celebrate  the  praisee 
ef  the  town  from  which  he  derived  his  ecclesiastical  title. 

'  Of  fiochester.  *  Of  St  MUdred's,  in  the  Isle  of  Thanet, 


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190  HENBT  OP  HU1ITIN<HX>N.  [BOOK  TL 

with  Elfward,  the  king's  grieye,  and  numhers  of  men  and 
women,  and  then  they  returned  in  trimnph  to  their  sh^. 
It  was  terrible  to  witness  the  spectacle  of  an  ancient  and 
noble  city  reduced  to  ashes,  its  streets  heaped  with  the 
corpses  of  the  citizens,  the  ground  and  the  riyer  discoloured 
with  blood,  to  hear  the  shrieks  of  women  and  boys  led 
away  ct^tives,  and  to  see  the  head  of  the  English  church, 
the  source  of  its  doctrine,  shamefully  dragged  away,  bound 
in  fetters. 

In  the  twelfth  year,  on  Saturday  in  Easter  week,  the 
Danes  were  in  a  rage  with  the  Archbishop,  because  he 
refused  to  be  ransomed,  and  they  were  at  the  time  drunk 
with  wine,  ^Hbich  had  been  brou^t  from  the  south.  They 
therefore  dragged  him  into  the  middle^,  and  casting  stones 
and  horns  of  ox^i  upon  him,  at  last,  when  he  had  offered 
an  earnest  prayer  and  thanksgiying  to  Almighty  God,  they 
dashed  out  his  brains  with  a  battle-axe.  Thus  fell  the  man 
of  God,  his  sacred  blood  sprinkling  ^e  earth,  while  his 
beatified  soul  was  reoeiyed  within  the  heayeuly  temple. 
On  the  morrow,  the  Bishops  Ednoth  and  Elf  hun*  received 
the  body,  which  they  carried  with  due  honour,  and  buried 
in  St  Paul's  Minster,  where  God  manifests  die  merit  c^ 
the  holy  martyr.  Lefwing  succeeded  as  archbishop.  Too 
late  the  king  made  peace  with  the  Danish  army,  paying 
them  as  tribute  8OO0I. ;  but  it  was  just  in  time  to  save  the 
coimtry  from  being  washed  by  intolerable  suffering.  Forty- 
five  of  the  Danish  ships  took  service  under  the  king,  en- 
gaging to  defend  England,  the  king  finding  them  in  food 
and  clothing. 

In  the  thirteenth  year,  Sweyn,  king  of  Denmark,  entered 
the  Humber  as  far  as  Gainsborough,  and  Uhtred  the  earl, 
and  all  the  Northumbrian  nation,  quickly  submitted  to 
him.  The  people,  also,  of  Lindsey  and  the  Five  Burghs*, 
and  all  to  the  north  of  the  Watling  Street*,  gave  him 

1  The  Saxon  Gbronide  nyi  "  hTutrngp,"*  the  hwi»4kmg  being  the  popokr 
snembly,  as  well  as  the  court  of  judicature,  of  the  Northmen.  The  name  n 
ttill  preserved  in  our  courts  of  hustings  and  electiye  assemblies. 

'  Bishops  of  Dordiester  and  London.  '  See  p.  172. 

^  The  Watling  Street,  the  great  highway  between  London  and  Chettei^ 
wms  by  treaty  the  bevndary  line  between  the  Danelag,  the  Banish  territory 
comprising  all  England  east  and  north  of  that  line^  and  the  lemaimBg  poa* 
lof  theki^of  WcMex. 


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A.D.  1013-14.]     SWETM  AND   CANUTE,   KINGS.  191 

Iwstages.  The  king  intrusted  th«  hostages  and  ships  to 
tlie  guardianship  of  his  son  Canute,  and  marched  himself 
to  Oxford  and  Winchester,  receiving  the  submission  of  the 
people  of  those  parts.  On  his  return  to  London,  many  of 
his  troops  were  drowned  in  the  Thames,  because  itiej 
would  not  cross  it  by  the  bridge.  Tho  citizens,  encouraged 
by  the  presence  of  King  Ethelred,  made  a  stout  resistance, 
and  Sweyn  was  forced  to  draw  off  his  troops.  He  retreated 
to  Wallingford,  and  from  thence  marched  on  Bath,  where 
all  Wessex  gave  in  their  submission  to  him.  The  Lon- 
doners, also,  on  his  return  with  the  fleet,  gave  him  their 
allegiance,  being  in  alarm  lest  he  should  utterly  destroy 
their  city.  Upon  this  King  Ethelred  sent  his  queen, 
Emma,  to  her  brother  Eichard,  in  Normandy,  and  after- 
wards his  sons  Edward  and  Alfred.  Sweyn  was  now 
acknowledged  king  by  the  whole  nation,  and  he  ordered 
provisions  and  pay  to  be  levied  for  his  army  throughout  all 
England;  as  Thurketil  did  for  his  troops  at  Greenwich. 
Meanwhile,  King  Ethehred  went  to  Whitland^,  ^ere  he 
spent  Christmas,  and  then  crossed  over  the  sea,  and  took 
refuge  with  Eichard,  duke  of  Normandy. 

[a.d.  1014.]  In  the  fourteenth  year,  Sweyn,  now  become 
king  of  England,  died  suddenly;  and  ihe  Danish  army 
elected  his  son  Canute^  king.  The  English,  however, 
dispatched  messengers  to  King  Ethelred,  giving  him  to 
understand  that  if  he  would  govern  them  more  clemently 
than  he  had  done  before,  they  would  willingly  acknowledge 
him  king.  Upon  which  he  sent  over  his  son  Edward,  to 
promise  on  his  part  all  that  was  fitting  for  the  king  and 
the  people ;  and,  fdlowing  himself,  he  was  received  with 
joy  by  the  whole  English  nation.  Meanwhile,  Canute 
remained  at  Gainsborough,  with  his  army,  till  Easter,  and 
he  made  a  certain  agreement  with  the  people  of  Lindsey"*; 
upon  hearing  which.  King  Ethelred  came  with  a  great 
army,  and  taking  the  country  by  surprise,  laid  it  waste 
with  fire,  and  put  most  of  the  provincials  to  the  sword. 

1  Isle  of  "Wight 

*  The  name,  is  properly  "Cnute,"  or  "Knute;"  but  I  haye  thought  it 
most  advisable  to  follow  the  &miliar  fonn. 

^  They  were  to  find  horses,  sad  the  king  was  to  join  tbem  in  ] 
the  Eoglish.    The  Danes  had  been  loug  paramount  m  Lindsey. 


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193  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  VI. 

Canute,  however,  who  was  very  crafty,  left  the  people  he 
had  deceived  to  their  fate,  and  sailed  on  hoard  his  fleet  to 
Sandwich,  and  there  he  put  on  shore  the  hostages  given 
to  his  father,  having  cut  off  their  hands  and  noses.  Besides 
all  these  evils,  the  king  ordered  that  21,0002.  should  he 
paid  to  the  army  stationed  at  Greenwich  ^  To  these  ordi- 
nary evils  the  Lord  added  an  extraordinary  calamity ;  for 
the  tide  rising  imusually  high,  many  villages  and  much 
people  were  washed  away. 

In  the  fifteenth  year,  Edric,  the  ealdorman,  foully  be- 
trayed Sigeferth  and  Morcar,  chief  thanes  [of  the  Five 
Bm-ghs],  inviting  them  into  his  chamber,  where  he  had 
them  murdered.  Whereupon  Edmund,  the  king's  son^, 
took  Sigeferth's  wife  and  married  her,  and  seized  &e  lands 
of  the  two  thanes.  Meanwhile,  Canute,  returning  from 
Denmark,  landed  at  Sandwich;  from  thence  he  sailed  to 
Frome-mouth,  in  Wessex,  and  from  thence  pillaged  Dor- 
setshire, Somersetslure,  and  Wiltshire.  King  Ethelred  lay 
sick  at  Corsham ;  but  Edmund,  the  Etheling,  and  Edric, 
the  ealdorman,  levied  an  army  to  oppose  Canute.  When 
they  came  together,  Edric  attempted  to  betray  the  Ethe- 
ling; so  they  parted,  and  the  contest  was  abandoned,  and  all 
Wessex  submitted  to  Canute,  the  Danish  king. 

In  the  fifteenth  year,  Edric,  who  had  gone  over  to  the 
side  of  Canute,  joined  him  with  40  ships,  with  which  the 
king's  fleet  of  160  ships  imited  in  the  Thames.  Thence 
the  army  crossed  the  river  to  Cricklade,  and  they  laid 
waste  all  Warwickshire  with  fire  and  sword.  Then  King 
Ethelred  issued  a  proclamation  that  every  able  man 
throughout  England  should  join  his  army.  But  when  vast 
numbers  had  been  thus  assembled,  the  king  was  informed 
that  his  followers  were  ready  to  betray  him ;  he  therefore 
disbanded  the  army,  and  retired  to  London.  Edmund, 
however,  joined  Utred,  earl  of  Northumbria,  and  they  plun- 
dered in  company  throughout  Shropshire,  Staffordshire, 
and  Leicestershire.  On  the  other  side,  Canute  went 
through  Buckinghamshire  into  Bedfordshire,  and  so  into 
Huntingdonshire,  and  by  the  Fens  to  Stamford.     He  then 

>  Stationed  there,  probably,  to  oyerawe  the  Londoners. 
«  The  "Etheling." 


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A.D.  1016.]  ZING   EDMUND   IBONSIDE.  198 

passed  through  Lincolnshire  and  Nottinghamshire,  and 
entered  Northumbria  in  his  way  to  York.  When  Utred 
heard  this,  he  gave  up  his  plundering,  and,  returning  north- 
ward, was  compelled  to  submit  to  Canute,  as  did  all  North- 
umbria ;  but  though  he  gave  hostages,  he  was  put  to  death. 
Edmund  retreated  to  London,  where  his  father  lay ;  while 
Canute,  having  made  Eric  earl  over  Northumbria,  in  the 
place  of  Utred,  went  back  to  his  fleet  before  Easter.  After 
Easter  he  sailed  to  London. 

[a.d.  1016.]  Ethelred,  the  king,  had  died  there  before 
the  arrival  of  the  enemy's  fleet,  his  reign  of  thirty-seven 
years  having  been  attended  with  almost  incessant  toil  and 
perplexities.  His  son  Edmund,  sumamed  "  Ironside,"  on 
account  of  his  prodigious  strength  and  his  extraordinary 
resoluteness  in  war,  was  chosen  king.  After  his  elec- 
tion he  went  into  Wessex,  where  all  tihe  people  rendered 
him  their  allegiance.  Meanwhile,  the  Danish  fleet  sailed  up 
to  Greenwich,  and  thence  to  London;  and  they  dug  a 
great  canal  on  the  south,  and  dragged  their  ships  through 
it  to  the  western  side  above  the  bridge.  They  likewise  dug 
a  trench  roimd  the  city,  so  that  no  one  could  go  in  or  go 
out.  They  also  made  frequent  and  desperate  assaults 
against  it,  but  the  citizens  oflfered  a  stout  and  wary  re- 
sistance. 

Of  the  wars  of  King  Edmund  and  his  great  prowess,  the 
following  account  is  given  in  ancient  histories  which  celebrate 
his  praise.  Edmund's  first  battle  with  the  Danish  army 
was  at  Pen,  near  Gillingham,  where  fortime  inclined  to  the 
side  of  Edmund ;  his  second  battle  was  fought  with  Canute 
ab  Sheiiton,  and  was  severely  contested.  In  this  battle 
Edric,  the  ealdorman,  and  Aimer  the  beloved^,  took  part 
against  King  Edmund,  and  there  was  great  slaughter  on 
both  sides,  and  the  armies  separated  of  themselves  ^.     In 

'  Henry  of  Huntrngdon's  text  has  Aimer  Dyrling,  which  Ingram  and 
Giles,  in  their  translations  of  the  Saxon  Chronicle,  render  "Aimer  the 
Darling." 

*  Ingram  gives  an  opposite  turn  to  the  parallel  passage  in  the  Saxon 
Chronicle ;  **  and  the  leaders  came  together  in  the  fight"  He  remarks  in  a 
note,  "  This  is  a  new  interpretation,  but  the  word  heras,  the  plural  of  hera, 
will  justify  it ;  and  it  points  at  once  to  the  distinguishing  feature  of  this 
battle,  which  was  the  single  combat  between  Canute  and  Bdmund.    See  an 

O 


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194  maonr  of  HuimKGDoir.  [book  ti. 

the  third,  he  inarched  to  London  with  a  diosen  hand  of 
troops,  and,  driving  the  besieging  armj  to  their  ships, 
raised  the  siege  and  Altered  the  city  wil£  the  triumph  he 
had  won.  The  fourth^  battle  was  fou^  i^ainst  the  same 
army  two  days  afterwards  on  their  retreat  to  Br^itford. 
Here  many  of  his  soldiers,  in  their  too  great  haste  to  cross 
the  river,  were  drowned,  but  notwithstanding  he  obtained 
the  victoiy.  Upon  this.  King  Canute  became  alarmed,  and 
drew  together  a  number  of  troops  to  merease  his  iorceL 
Canute  also  and  Edric  laid  their  plans  for  obtaining  by 
treachery  the  success  which  they  could  not  gain  by  arms ; 
and  Edric  undertook  to  betray  King  Edmund.  In  ocm^ 
sequence,  by  his  advice,  the  king  went  into  Wessex  to  lead 
a  very  powerful  army  against  Canute,  who,  meanwhile,  bad 
laid  siege  to  London,  which  he  foriously  assaulted  bodi  bj 
land  and  water,  but  the  citizens  de^ndod  it  manfully.  Tbe 
fifth  time  S  King  Edmund  i^^sdn  fording  the  river  Thames 
at  Brentford,  went  into  Kent  to  give  battle  to  the  Danes, 
but  at  the  fiist  encounter  of  the  standard-bearers  in  the  van 
of  the  armies,  a  terrible  panic  seized  the  Danes,  and  ^ej 
took  to  flight.  Edmund  followed  them  with  great  slau^ter 
as  far  as  Aylesford,  and  if  he  had  continued  the  pursuit,  the 
Danish  war  would  have  been  ended  that  day.  But  the 
traitorous  counsel  of  the  ealdorman  Edric  induced  him  td 
halt.  Never  had  more  fatal  counsel  been  given  in  England. 
The  sixth  battle  was  fought  between  Edmund,  at  the  head 
of  a  powerful  army,  and  Canute,  who  had  assembled  tbe 
whole  force  of  the  Danes  at  Esesdune^.  The  engagem^rt 
was  obstinate  and  decisive,  for  both  armies  stood  ^Ma 
^•ound  undaimted  and  despising  death.  Then  tihie  young 
Sing  Edmimd  distinguished  himself  for  his  valotir.  For 
perceiving  that  the  Danes  were  %htmg  with  more  ihsm 
ordinary  vigour,  he  quitted  his  roySl  station  whida,  as  was 
wont,  he  had  taken  between  the  dragon  and  the  ensign 
called  the  Standard,  and  rushed  impetuously  on  the  fore- 
interesting  descriptioii  of  the  engftgenient,  with  auuiy  minute  ^articidsii.— - 
Antiq.  Celto-Scand.,  p.  180.** 

*  The  Saxon  Chronicle  doet  not  reckon  the  firft  fight  at  Bcentford^  which 
Appears  to  have  been  only  a  skirmi^,  in  the  nmnfoor  of  Bdmnnd's  battletf, 
80  that  it  makes  this  engagement  at  Brcmtford  the  fonrth,  -vdiilo  Hemy  «€ 
Huntingdon  calls  it  the  iifih. 

Saxon  Chronicle, '' Assaa-dan  ;**  A89ingd<niy  in  Bssex. 


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A.D.  1016.]  EDMUHD  IBOKail>E*S   BATTLES.  196 

most  rank.  He  feU  on  it  like  lightning,  "shielding  a  chosen 
Bword  fit  for  the  hand  of  the  royal  youth,  smd  hewing  a 
passage  throngk  liie  centre,  exposed  himself  and  those  who 
followed  him  to  be  cat  off  by  the  enemy.  But  he  charged 
right  on  to  King  Canute's  body-guard,  when  a  fearful  out- 
cry and  horrible  shrieks  were  heard,  and  the  ealdorman 
Edric,  seeing  that  the  rout  of  the  Danes  was  imminent, 
shouted  to  the  Engitsh :  "  Flet  Ekigle,  flet  Engle,  ded  is 
Edmund,"  which  means  "  Mee  English,  flee  English,  Ed* 
mund  is  dead."  Thus  shouting,  he  fled  with  his  own  troops, 
followed  by  the  whole  English  army.  A  dreadful  slaughter 
of  the  Ikiglish  was  made  in  this  battle ;  there  feU  in  it  the 
ealdormen  Ednod,  lafric,  and  GU)dwin  [of  Lindsey],  and 
Ulfcitel  of  East-Anglia,  and  Ailward,  son  of  Ethelsy  S  the 
ealdorman,  and  the  flower  of  the  English  nobility.  King 
Canute  after  tiiis  victory  took  liCModon,  and  obtained  pos- 
session of  the  regalia  of  England.  The  sevaith  time,  the 
two  armies  met  in  Gloucestearshire^  but  the  great  men  of 
the  realm,  fearing  on  one  side  the  power  of  Kmg  Edmimd, 
and  on  ihe  other  that  of  King  Canute,  said  among  them- 
selves, "  Why  are  we  such  fools  as  to  be  so  often  putting 
our  lives  in  peril?  Let  those  who  wish  to  reign  singly 
decide  the  quarrd  by  sin^e  coml»t"*  The  proposal  wajs 
approved  by  the  kings,  for  Canute  was  not  wanting  in 
courage.  Lists  were  erected  in  Olney,  and  the  duel  of 
the  kings  began.  Thdr  spears  on  both  sides  were  shattered 
against  the  highly-wrougi^  armour  th^  wore,  and  the  affair 
came  to  be  decided  by  ^  sword.  Both  nations  heard  and 
saw  with  groans  and  shouts  the  feaiful  clang  and  the- 

'  Some  MSS.  of  the  Saxon  Chronicle  call  Jihn  Elfirine  and  Bthdine. 

*  Near  Deerh«ret,  «n  the  Severn. 

*  There  is  nothing  in  the  Saxon  Obitmlde  «b«irt  tint  decision  of  thr 
fotrrel  hj  nngle  conobat  of  the  Idngi ;  the  statement  there  being,  that  the 
nobles  interfered  to  procure  peaoe  by  an  amicable  division  of  the  kingdom. 
Eoger  of  Wendover  copies  and  amplifies  Heniy  of  Huntingdon's  details  of 
the  smgle  combat  The  silence  of  the  Sa»>n  Gfanmide  is  important,  yet 
fltill,  considering  bow  much  -die  duel  was  in  vogue  among  Oanute's  countiT^ 
men,  and  the  character  of  fidmund  Ironside,  there  is  nothing  improbable  in 
the  two  kings  having  adopted  this  mode  of  deciding  the  contest  An  ex- 
amination of  the  Icelandic  Sagas  would  probably  throw  some  light  on  this 
subject.  An  adventure  of  so  romantic  a  character  could  hardJj  have  es* 
caped  the  notice  of  the  Scalds  and  writers  of  that  class^  whose  compositions 
were  current  in  the  coortt  of  die  Norman  king. 

O  2 


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196  HENRY   OP  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  VI. 

gleaming  flash  of  their  arms.  But  at  length  the  incompara- 
ble strength  of  Edmund  [Ironside]  dealt  thimder  on  his 
rival,  and  Canute,  though  he  defended  himself  stoutly, 
beginning  to  quail,  cried  out,  **  Bravest  of  youths,  why 
should  either  of  us  risk  his  life  for  the  sake  of  a  crown  ? 
Let  us  be  brothers  by  adoption,  and  divide  the  kingdom,  so 
governing  that  I  may  rule  your  affairs,  and  you  mine.  Even 
file  government  of  Denmark  I  submit  to  your  disposal." 
The  generous  mind  of  the  yoimgking  was  moved  to  gentle- 
ness by  these  words,  and  the  kiss  of  peace  was  mutually 
given.  The  people  assenting  with  tears  of  joy,  the  king- 
dom of  Wessex  was  allotted  to  Edmund,  and  the  kingdom 
of  Mercia  to  Canute,  who  then  returned  to  London. 

[a.d.  1016.]  King  Edmund  was  treasonably  slain  a  few 
days  afterwards.  Thus  it  happened :  one  night,  this  great 
and  powerful  king  having  occasion  to  retire  to  the  house 
for  reheving  the  calls  of  nature,  the  son  of  the  ealdorman 
Edric,  by  his  father's  contrivance,  concealed  himself  in  the 
pit,  and  stabbed  the  king  twice  from  beneath  with  a  sharp 
dagger,  and,  leaving  the  weapon  j&xed  in  his  bowels,  made 
his  escape.  Edric  then  presented  himself  to  Canute,  and 
saluted  him,  saying,  "Hail!  thou  who  art  sole  king  of 
England !"  Having  explained  what  had  taken  place,  Canute 
replied,  "For  this  deed  I  will  exalt  you,  as  it  merits, 
higher  than  all  the  nobles  of  England."  He  then  com- 
manded that  Edric  should  be  decapitated  and  his  head 
placed  upon  a  pole  on  the  highest  battlement  of  the  tower  of 
London  ^  Thus  perished  King  Edmund  L-onside,  after  a 
short  reign  of  one  year,  and  he  was  buried  at  Glastonbiny, 
near  his  grandfather  Edgar. 

[a.d.  1017.]  Canute,  now  king  of  England,  married 
Emma,  the  daughter  of  the  Duke  of  Normandy,  who  was 
before  the  wife  of  King  Ethebed.  He  quickly  paid  to  the 
English  nobles  the  just  reward  of  their  treason ;  for  whereas 
he  assumed  the  government  of  Wessex,  while  Eric  held 
that  of  Northmnbria,  Thurkill  of  East-Anglia,  and  Edric  of 
Mercia,  Edric  was  put  to  death,  Thm-kill  banished,  and 
Erie  compelled  to  flee.  Moreover,  his  displeasm'e  fell  on 
some  other  nobles  of  the  highest  rank :  he  put  to  death 

'  The  Saxon  Chronicle  sayi  nothing  of  the  mode  of  Edmund'i  death. 


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A.D.  1017-24.]  BEIGN   OF   CANUTE.  197 

Norman  the  ealaorman ;  Edwy  the  Etheling  was  driven  into 
exile;  Ethelwold  was  beheaded;  Edwy,  king  of  the  Churls \ 
was  banished;  and  Britric  was  slain.  He  also  levied  an 
enormous  tax  throughout  the  whole  of  England,  to  the 
amount  of  73,000Z.,  besides  11,000Z.  paid  by  the  Londoners. 
So  severe  a  task-master  did  the  justice  of  God  inflict  on  the 
English. 

In  the  third  year  of  his  reign  Canute,  with  an  army 
composed  both  of  English  and  Danes,  went  over  to  Den- 
mark to  war  with  the  Vandals.  He  had  come  up  with  the 
enemy  and  was  prepared  to  give  battle  the  day  following, 
when  Earl  Godwin,  who  commanded  the  English  troops, 
made  a  night  attack  on  the  enemy's  camp,  without  the  king's 
knowledge.  Taking  them  by  surprise,  he  made  great  slaugh- 
ter and  entirely  routed  them.  At  daybreak  the  king, 
finding  that  the  EngUsh  were  gone,  supposed  that  they  had 
either  taken  flight  or  deserted  to  the  enemy.  However,  he 
marshalled  his  own  force  for  the  attack,  but  when  he 
reached  the  camp,  he  found  there  only  the  corpses  of  the 
slain,  blood,  and  booty.  Whereupon  he  ever  afterwards 
held  the  English  in  the  highest  honour,  considering  them 
not  inferior  to  the  Danes.  After  this  he  returned  to  Eng- 
land. About  this  time,  on  the  death  of  Archbishop  Lyfwing, 
Ethelnoth,  his  successor,  went  to  Home ;  he  was  accom- 
panied by  Leofwine,  abbot  of  Ely,  who  had  been  imjustly 
deprived  of  his  abbey,  but  was  now  restored  by  command 
of  Pope  Benedict.  On  his  return  from  Kome,  the  arch- 
bishop caused  the  body  of  St.  Elphege^  to  be  translate*' 
from  London  to  Canterbury. 

[a.d.  1024.]  In  the  eighdiyear  of  Canute's  reign,  Eichard 
the  Second,  duke  of  Normandy,  father  of  Emma,  queen  of 
England,  departed  this  life.  Richard,  his  son,  who  suc- 
ceeded him,  lived  about  a  year,  and  then  his  brother  Robert, 

1  "  Ceoria  cyneg,"  Saxon  Chronicle.  None  of  the  translators  have  offered 
any  comment  on  this  singular  title.  Was  Edwj  the  Eobin  Hood  of  those 
times? 

*  The  Archbishop  of  Canterbury,  martyred  by  the  Danes  A.».  1012. 
The  Saxon  Chronicle  gives  an  account  of  the  pomp  with  which  his  remainf 
were  translated  from  St  Paul's  Cathedral  to  Canterbury.  St.  £lphege*s 
name  is  retained  in  our  calendars  on  the  19th  of  April,  the  day  of  his 
martyrdom. 


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198  HENBY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  VI. 

eight  years.  The  year  following,  the  king  went  into  Den- 
mark with  English  troops  against  Ulf  and  Eglaf,  who  had 
inraded  it  bodi  by  sea  and  land  with  a  great  force  of  the 
Swedish  nation.  In  that  war  numbers  both  of  the  Eng- 
lish and  Danes  fell  on  the  side  of  Canute ;  and  the  Swedes 
were  victorious. 

Bang  Canute,  in  the  twelfth  year  of  his  reign,  sailed  from 
England  with  50  ships  for  Norway,  and,  having  defeated 
Olave  \  the  Norwegian  king,  reduced  that  coimtry  to  sub- 
jection. On  his  return  to  England,  Olave  endeavouring  to 
reinstate  himself  was  slain  by  the  people,  and  Canute  re- 
tained the  IdngdcHntiU  his  death.  About  this  time  Bobert« 
king  of  the  Franks^  was  succeeded  by  his  son  Henry. 

[jLD.  1031.]  In  the  fifteenth  year  of  Canute's  reign,  Bobert> 
duke  of  Normandy,  died  during  his  pilgrimage  to  Jeru- 
salem, and  was  sucoeeded  by  his  son  William  the  bastard,  of 
tender  i^e :  Canis^  also  went  to  Bome^  with  great  pomp,  and 
granted  in  perpetuity  the  ahns  called  *'  Bomscot,"  which  his 
predecessors  had  given  to  the  Eoman  Church.  No  king  of 
the  western  parts  displayed  so  much  magnificence  in  his 
pOgrimi^e  to  Bome.  Who  can  reckon  the  alms,  and  the 
o^^rings,  and  the  costly  banquets  which  the  great  king 
gave  during  his  pilgrimage?  The  year  he  returned  he 
went  into  Scotland,  md  Malcolm,  king  of  the  Scots,  paid 
him  allegiance,  as  did  also  two  other  kings,  Melbeathe  and 
Jermarc. 

[ajd.  10S6.]  King  Canute  died  at  Shaftesbury,  after  a 
reign  of  20  years  ^  and  was  buried  at  Winchester  in  the 
old  minster.  A  few  particulars  oi  his  grandeur  must  be 
collected,  for  before  him  there  was  never  so  great  a  king  of 
Ikigland.  He  was  lord  of  the  whole  of  Denmark,  Ikigland, 
and  Norway;  as  also  of  Scotland.  Besides  the  various  wars 
in   which  he  gained  so   much  glory,  his  nobleness  and 

'  St  Clave,  who  first  introdaced  Cliristianity  in  Norway,  and  fell  in 
fighting  with  his  headten  subjects  at  the  hattle  of  Stikkelstad,  near  Drontheim. 
Be  was  afterwards  canonised,  and  esteemed  the  patron  saint  of  Norway ; 
and  many  churches  in  England  were  dedicated  to  him. 

^  '*  Canute's  journey  to  Some  is  placed  by  Wippo,  a  oentemporaneoas 
writer,  in  the  year  1027.     Ptfrfwita,  iii.  472."— P«fm. 

'  Tlie  date  given  for  Canute's  death  is  ^at  of  the  Saxon  Cbroaide. 
Henry  of  Huntingdon  reckons  his  reign  at  20  years ;  one  MS.  of  the  SazoB 
Chronicle  says,  "  He  was  king  over  all  England  veri/  nigh  20  years." 


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A.D.  1035.]     Canute's  death  and  characteb.  100 

greatness  of  mind  were  eminentlj  displayed  on  three  ooea- 
sions.  First,  when  he  married  his  daughter  to  the  Boman 
€93iperor  with  an  immense  dowry.  Secondly,  when,  during 
his  journey  to  Home,  he  reduced  the  oppressive  tolls^ 
exacted  from  pilgrims  on  the  roads  through  France  hy  the 
red^nption  of  one-half  of  t^em  at  his  private  expense. 
Tlnrdly,  when  at  the  summit  of  his  power,  he  ordered  a 
seat  to  be  placed  for  him  on  the  sea-shore  when  the  tide  was 
coming  in;  thus  seated,  he  shouted  to  the  flowing  sea, 
"  Thou,  too,  art  subject  to  my  command,  as  the  Iwid  on 
which  I  am  seated  is  mine ;  and  no  one  has  ever  resisted 
my  commands  with  impunity.  I  command  you,  then,  not 
to  flow  over  my  land,  nor  presume  to  wet  ihe  feet  and  the 
robe  of  your  lord.**  The  tide,  however,  continuing  to  rise 
as  usual,  dashed  over  his  feet  and  legs  without  respect  to 
his  royal  person.  Then  the  king  leaped  backwards,  saying: 
**  Let  all  men  know  how  empty  and  worthless  is  the  powar 
of  kings,  for  there  is  none  worthy  of  the  name,  but  He  whom 
heaven,  earth,  and  sea  obey  by  eternal  laws.**  From 
thenceforth  King  Canute  never  wore  his  arown  of  gold,  but 
placed  it  for  a  lasting  memorial  on  the  image  of  our  Lord 
affixed  to  a  cross,  to  ti^e  hoiiom*  of  God  the  sdmighty  King : 
through  whose  mercy  may  the  soul  of  Canute,  the  king,  en* 
joy  everlasting  rest*. 

Harold,  the  son  of  King  Canute,  by  EMgiva,  daughter  of 
£yifelin,  the  ealdorman,  was  chosen  kmg.  For  there  was  a 
great  council^  held  at  Oxford,  where  Earl  Leofric  and  all 
Uie  thanes  north  of  the  Thames,  with  the  Lcmdoners^ 


"  Tolonea  rel  trayersa,**  droits  de  traverse, — Du  Chesvie,  Glossar. 

*  This  story,  which  is  not  found  in  the  Saxon  Ghroniele,  appears  to  rest 
on  the  authority  of  Henry  of  Huntingdon^  from  whose  History  it  was 
adopted  by  succeeding  writex^  The  reader's  opinion  of  its  authenticity  will 
depend  upon  the  degree  of  credit  he  is  disposed  to  attadi  to  Henry  of  Hun« 
tingdon's  statements  when  they  are  unsupported  by  other  testimtmy.  Those 
who  feel  unwilling  to  surrender  a  very  interesting  story,  which  has  become 
as  fiuniliar  to  us  as  "  household  words,"  will  be  pleased  to  remember  that 
our  author  lived  within  60  years  of  the  death  of  Canute,  and  expressly 
arers  that  he  collected  information  of  former  events  from  eye-witnesset 
■till  living.  We  have  already  had  an  anecdote  so  obtained  of  a  date  80 
yean  earlier  than  the  present  one ;  see  note  p.  184. 

»  "  Witan,"  Saxon  Chronicle. 

«  The  '<  Lithsmen  of  London/'  Saxon  Chionide :  a  Danid  term  for  thf 


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SOO  HENRY   OP  HUNTfNGDON.  [BOOK  VI, 

chose  Harold  in  order  to  preserve  the  kingdom  for  his 
brother  Hardecanute,  who  was  then  in  Denmark.  But 
Earl  Godwin,  father  of  Harold,  who  afterwards  became  king, 
with  the  principal  thanes  of  Wessex,  opposed  the  election, 
though  to  no  purpose.  But  it  was  resolved  that  the  Queen 
Emma  should  occupy  Winchester  with  the  household  of  the 
deceased  king,  and  hold  all  Wessex  on  behalf  of  her  son 
[Hardecanute],  Godwin  being  the  commander  of  her  army. 
However,  Harold  drove  Queen  Emma,  his  stepmother,  into 
banishment,  and  she  sought  refiige  with  Baldwin,  earl  of 
Flanders,  who  assigned  to  her  the  town  and  castle  oi 
Bruges,  where  she  thenceforth  dwelt;  for  Normandy,  hjr 
native  country,  was  a  royal  fief,  and  William  the  Duke, 
being  a  minor,  was  being  brought  up  at  the  court  of  the 
king  of  the  Franks.  The  year  after,  Ethelnoth,  the  Arch- 
bishop of  Oanterbuiy,  died  and  was  succeeded  by  Bishop 
Edsy. 

[a.d.  1040.]  King  Harold  died  at  Oxford,  after  reigning 
four  years  and  four  months.  He  was  buried  at  Westminster. 
In  his  time,  sixteen  ships  were  found  by  each  of  the  ports, 
at  the  rate  of  eight  silver  marks  [for  every  steersman  %  as 
in  the  time  of  his  father.  Hardecanute,  the  son  of  King 
Canute  and  Queen  Emma,  coming  from  Denmark,  landed 
at  Sandwich,  and  was  unanimously  chosen  king  both  by  the 
EngUsh  and  Danes.  In  his  second  year  a  tribute  was  paid 
to  the  Danish  army  of  21,089i. ;  and^  after  that  there 
was  paid  for  32  ships,  ll,048i.  The  same  year  Edward, 
the  son  of  King  Ethelred,  came  from  Normandy  to  King 
Hardecanute,  his  [half]  brother,  for  they  were  both  sons 
of  Emma,  daughter  of  Duke  Eichard. 

Hardecanute  was  snatched  away  by  a  sudden  death  in  the 

freemen  of  Danish-Norwegian  origin  and  extraction,  who  appear  to  have 
been  so  numerous  and  powerful  in  London  as  to  haye  turned  the  scale  in 
fiiTonr  of  the  princes  of  the  Danish  line. 

1  Henry  of  Huntingdon  omits  saying  what  this  pay  covered ;  certainly 
not  the  whole  equipment  or  wages  of  the  crew.  The  Saxon  Chronicle  says 
it  was  for  the  "  hamelan,"  which  Petrie  and  Giles  translate  rowers.  I  have 
preferred  adopting  Ingram's  version  of  '*  steersman,"  supported  by  Florence 
of  Worcester,  who  renders  it  "  unicuique  gubematori"  Eight  silver  marks 
is  too  much  for  a  common  sailor  of  those  days.  The  mark,  a  Danish  coin, 
was  worth  in  the  time  of  Alfred  1 00  pennies ;  afterwards  it  rose  to  160 
pence,  or  13«.  id.,  a  computation  not  altogether  lost  even  now. 


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A.D.  1040.]       HARDEOANOTE   SUCCEEDS  HAROLD  201 

flower  of  his  age  at  Lambeth  *,  after  a  short  reign  of  two 
years.  He  was  of  aa  ingenuous  disposition,  and  treated  his 
followers  with  the  profusion  of  youth.  Such  was  his  liberality 
that  tables  were  laid  four  times  a  day  with  royal  sumptuous- 
ness  for  his  whole  court,  preferring  that  fragments  of  the 
repast  should  be  removed  after  those  invited  were  satisfied, 
than  that  such  fragments  should  be  served  up  for  the  enter- 
tainment of  those  who  were  not  invited.  In  our  time  it  is 
the  custom,  whether  from  parsimony,  or  as  they  themselves 
say  from  fastidiousness,  for  princes  to  provide  only  one 
meal  a  day  for  their  court.  Hardecanute  was  buried  in  the 
old  minster  at  Winchester,  near  his  father  Canute.  And 
now  the  chief  men  of  the  English  nation,  released  from  the 
tliraldom  of  the  Danes,  joyfully  dispatched  messengers  to 
Alfred,  the  eldest  son  of  King  Ethelred,  inviting  him  to 
accept  the  crown.  And  he,  being  English  on  his  father's 
side,  and  Norman  by  his  mother's,  brought  with  him  into 
England  many  of  his  mother's  Norman  kinsmen,  as  well  as 
others  of  his  own  age  who  had  been  with  him  in  the  wars. 
Meanwhile,  Godwin,  the  bold  earl  and  consummate  traitor, 
thought  within  himself  that  it  might  be  possible  to  make  his 
daughter  queen  by  giving  her  in  marriage  to  Edward,  who  was 
the  younger  and  the  more  simple  of  the  two  brothers ;  but 
he  foresaw  that  Alfred  by  reason  of  his  primogeniture  and 
his  superior  ability  would  disdain  such  a  marriage.  God- 
win, therefore,  whispered  in  the  ears  of  the  English  nobles, 
that  Alfred  had  brought  over  with  him  too  many  Norman 
followers;  that  he  had  promised  them  the  lands  of  the 
English ;  that  it  was  not  safe  for  them  to  allow  a  bold  and 
crafty  race  to  take  root  among  them ;  that  these  foreigners 
must  be  punished,  in  order  that  others  might  not  thereafter 
presume  to  intrude  themselves  among  the  English  on  the 
strength  of  their  being  of  kin  to  the  royal  race.  So  the 
Normans  who  came  over  with  Alfred  were  seized  and 

>  One  of  tbe  Sagas  of  the  northern  literature  mentions  Clapham  as  the 
place  of  Hardecannte's  death,  so  called  from  Osgod  Olapa,  one  of  his  chiefs, 
at  whose  house  the  king  died  suddenly  from  excess  of  drinking.  The 
Saxon  Chronicle,  which  gives  the  same  account  of  his  death,  says  that  "  he 
did  nothing  royal  during  his  whole  reign."  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  who  dealt 
more  favourably  with  Hardecannte's  character  than  other  writers,  glosses  oyer 
hii  gluttony  by  giving  it  the  colour  of  a  generous  hospitality. 


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SOd  HXNBT  CHT  HUNmKSDON.  [BOOK  TL 

boiond,  and,  being  seated  in  a  rank  at  Guilford,  nine  were 
beheaded,  and  each  tenth  man  only  spared.  But  when  the 
wliole,  except  the  tenth  part,  were  slain,  the  English  were 
dissatisfied  that  so  many  still  survived,  and  they  r^uced  the 
number  by  a  seccmd  decimation,  so  that  very  few  indeed 
escaped.  They  also  tock  Al&ed  prisoner  and  carried  him 
to  £^,  ^diere  they  put  out  his  eyes,  and  he  died  ^  Th^ 
then  sent  messengers  and  hostages  into  Normandy  {ca 
Edward  the  younger,  off^ing  to  esteblis^  him  finnly  on  the 
throne,  but  stipulating  that  he  should  bring  veiy  few  of  the 
Ki»iiians  widi  him.  Edwaid  made  his  appearance  accord- 
ingly with  a  small  retinae  of  Ncnrmans,  and  he  was  elected 
king  by  all  the  pec^ole,  and  consecrated  at  Winchester  on 
Ea^r  day  by  Eadsige,  the  arehbishc^  [of  Canterbury]. 
Soon  afterwaatds  he  resigned  the  primacy  on  account  of  his 
infirm  health,  and  consecrated  Siward  to  it  in  his  stead. 
Stigand  also  was  made  bishop  of  East-Anglia. 

[a.d.  1044.]  King  Edward,  under  obligation  for  his  king- 
dom to  the  powerM  Earl  Godwin,  married  his  daughter 
Edgitha,  sister  of  Harold,  who  afterwards  became  king. 
About  this  time  there  was  so  great  a  famine  in  England, 
that  ^e  sester  of  wheat,  which  is  reckoned  a  h(»rse4oad, 
was  s<^d  for  five  shillingB,  and  even  more.  Afterwards 
Stigand,  who  was  bishop  in  East-Anglia«  was  made  bishop 
of  Winchester.  And  the  king  banished  Sweyn,  the  son  oif 
Earl  Godwin,  who  retired  to  Baldwin,  earl  of  Flanders, 
and  wintered  at  Bruges. 

In  the  sixth  year  of  King  Edward,  a  batde  was  fought  at 
Wallsdune  between  Henry,  king  of  the  Freaach,  and  the 
barons  of  Normandy,  because  ihey  refused  their  allegiance 
to  William  their  duke.  They  were  defeated,  and  William 
banished  some  of  them  and  punished  others  in  life  or  limb. 
At  that  time  two  Danish  chiefe,  Lothen  and  Irling,  laiKLed 
at  Sandwich,  where  they  collected  an  immense  booty,  with 

I  The  cruel  death  of  Alfred,  and  the  massacre  of  his  Norman  followers,  is 
assigned  to  the  year  10S6,  both  by  the  Saxon  Chronicle  and  Florence  of 
Worcester.  King  Harold  was  then  Hving.  Henry  of  Huntingdon  agrees 
with  these  authorities  in  making  Edward  (afterwards  King  Edward  the 
Confessor)  come  into  Eng^d,  ▲.».  1040,  to  the  court  of  his  half-brother 
Hardecanute,  which  cannot  be  reconciled  with  his  being  sent  for  after 
the  death  of  Alfred,  unleas  he  had  left  the  kingdom  in  the  interval,  of  which 
there  is  no  account. 


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A.D.  1042-51.]        EDWABD   THE   CON^^SSOB.  dOS 

mndi  gold  and  silver,  and  then  going  round  by  sea  they 
pillaged  Essex  also.  From  thence  they  sailed  for  Flanders^ 
where  they  sold  their  plunder,  and  then  returned  to  their 
own  country.  The  following  year,  Eaai  Sweyn  returned  to 
England  to  procure  the  king's  pardcMi,  but  when  his  brother 
Harold  and  Eaii  Beom  prev^oited  it,  he  then  had  recourse 
to  his  father  Godwin  at  Pev^isey,  and  humbly  intreating 
him,  as  also  his  brothers  Harold  and  Tosti,  and  Eaii  Beom, 
he  prevailed  with  th^n  that  Beom  should  accompany  him 
to  Sandwich  to  reccnnmend  him  to  the  king's  fiayoar.  Becnrn, 
therefore,  having  embarked  in  Sweyn's  fleet  as  a  mediates, 
was  foully  murdered  and  his  body  cast  forth;  but  it  was 
buried  by  his  friaids  at  Winchester,  near  King  Oanute,  his 
imcle.  Sweyn  then  retun^d  to  Flanders;  but  the  year 
following  he  was  restored  to  the  king's  favour  tiirough  the 
mediation  of  his  fetther,  Godwin.  At  that  time  Pope  Leo 
held  a  synod  at  Varcelli,  a;t  which  Uif,  bishop  of  Dorchester, 
was  present;  and  his  episcopal  staff  would  have  been 
broken,  if  he  had  not  paid  a  great  bribe ;  for  he  did  not 
know  his  duty  as  became  a  bishop.  Eadsige,  the  arch- 
l^ishop,  died,  as  did  also  his  successor,  Siward. 

[a.d.  1051.]  Edward,  in  die  tenth  year  of  his  reign,  made 
Ec^ert,  bishop  of  L<mdon,  Ardibishop  of  Canterbury.  It 
was  now  reported  to  the  king  that  Godwin,  his  fiither-in4aw, 
with  his  sons  Sweyn  and  Harold,  were  ocoispirmg  against 
him.  Upon  his  sunmioning  tiiem  to  appear,  and  their  re- 
fusing to  do  so  imless  tiiey  received  hostages,  the  king 
bani^ed  tbem.  Godwin  and  Sweyn  went  to  Flanders, 
and  Harold  to  Irdand  K  The  king,  much  exuberated,  sent 
away  the  Queen  Emma,  and  seized  her  treasure  and  her 
lands.  He  granted  to  Odda  the  earldoms  of  Devonshire, 
Somersetshire,  and  Dorsetshire,  and  gave  the  earldom  of 
Harold  to  Algar,  son  of  Earl  Lec^c  *. 

^  The  Saxon  Cliroiiicle  gives  a  nutch  fuller  account  than  Henry  of  Him- 
tingdon  does  of  the  disturbances  created  by  the  turbulent  Earl  G^win  and 
Iris  sons.     See  a.d.  1046  and  the  aabseqoent  yean. 

*  When  Godwin  and  hit  ions  were  at  the  ssenitk  ef  their  power,  Godwin 
Imuself  held  the  earldoms  of  Weisex,  of  Sussex,  and  Kent;  his  son  Snreyn 
the  earldoms  of  Oxford,  (rloncester,  Hereford,  Somersetshire,  and  Berksh  re; 
and  his  son  Harold  ^ote  of  Snex,  East-Anglia,  Huntingdon,  and  m- 
bridgeshire. 


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304  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  VI. 

[a.d.    1052.]    In  the   eleventh  yesir  of  Edward's  reign, 
Emma  the  Norman,  the  mother  and  wife  of  kings,  sub- 
mitted to  the  fate  common  to  all.     Then  came  Earl  God- 
win and  his  son  Sweyn,  with  full  sails  from  Flanders  to  the 
Isle  of  Wight,  which  they  plundered,  as  weU  as  Portland. 
Harold  also  sailing  from  Ireland  ravaged  the  country  about 
Porlock  \  and  then  joining  his  father  at  the  Isle  of  Wight, 
they  made  descents  upon  Ness  \  and  Komney,  and  Hythe, 
and  Folkstone,  and  Dover,  and  Sandwich,  and  Sheppey, 
everywhere  collecting  ships  and  taking  hostages.     A  party 
landing  at  Milton,   burnt  the    royal  vill  ;  but   the  fleet 
steering  by  North-mouth  [the  Nore]  towards  London,  met 
the  royal  fleet  of  60  ships  in  which  the  king  had  embarked. 
A  parley  ensued,  during  which  hostages  were  given ;  and  by 
the  counsel  of  Bishop  Stigand,  the  king  and  his  father-in- 
law  were   reconciled;  the  king  reinstated  him  in  all  his 
possessions  and  honoiu^,  and  took  again  the  queen  his 
wife ;  but  Kobert  the  archbishop  and  all  the  Frenchmen,  by 
whose  advice  the  king  had  outlawed  the  Earl,  were  banished ; 
and  Stigand  was  made  Archbishop  of  Canterbuiy.    About 
this  time  [a.d.   1064],  Siward,  the  powerful  Earl  of  Nor- 
thumbria,  a  giant  in  stature,  whose  vigour  of  mind  was 
equal  to  his  bodily  strength,  sent  his  son  on  an  expedition 
into  Scotland.     He  was  slain  in  the  war,  and  when  the 
news  reached  his  father,  he  inquired:  "Was  his  death- 
wound  received  before  or  behind  ?"  The  messengers  replied, 
"Before."    Then  said    he,  "I  greatly  rejoice;   no  other 
death   was  fitting  either  for  him   or  me."^    Whereupon, 
Siward  led  an  army  into  Scotland,  and  having  defeated  the 
king  and  ravaged  the  whole  kingdom,  he  reduced  it  to  sub- 
jection to  himself. 

[a.d.  1053.]  In  the  twelfth  year  of  Edward's  reign,  when 
the  king  was  at  Winchester,  where  he  often  resided,  and 
was  sitting  at  table,  with  his  father-in-law,  Godwin,  who  had 
conspired  against  him  by  his  side,  the  Earl  said  to  him, 

^  A  small  port  on  the  Bristol  Channel,  in  Somersetshire.       ^  Dnngeness. 

'  This  anecdote  of  the  stout  Earl  Siward,  immortalized  by  Shakspeare, 
and  the  subsequent  one  of  the  manner  in  which  the  Earl  himself  met  his 
death,  rest  on  the  authority  of  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  like  others  for  which 
we  are  wholly  indebted  to  him.  The  Saxon  Chronicle  informs  us  of  Siward's 
expedition  into  Scotland  against  the  usurper  Macbeth. 


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A.D.  1053-7.]  DEATHS  OF  EARLS  GODWIN  AND  SIWARD.     205 

"  Sir  king,  I  have  been  often  accused  of  harbouring  traitorous 
designs  against  you,  but  as  God  in  heaven  is  just  and  true, 
may  this  morsel  of  bread  choke  me,  if  even  in  thought  I 
have  ever  been  false  to  you."  But  God,  who  is  just  and 
true,  heard  the  words  of  the  traitor,  for  the  bread  stuck  in 
his  throat  and  choked  him,  so  that  death  presently  followed, 
the  foretaste  of  the  death  which  is  eternal  ^  His  son 
Harold  received  a  grant  of  his  father's  earldom ;  and  Algar, 
earl  of  Chester,  succeeded  to  the  earldom  of  Harold. 

In  the  thirteenth  year  of  King  Edward's  reign,  the  barons 
of  Normandy  fought  a  battle  with  the  French  at  the  castle 
which  is  called  "  Mortmar,"  in  which  Ralph,  the  chamber- 
lain, who  commanded  the  French  army,  was  slain ;  and  the 
Normans  gained  the  victory.  But  Henry  the  French  king, 
and  William,  duke  of  Normandy,  were  not  present  at  the 
battle.  The  year  following,  the  stout  Earl  Siward  being 
seized  with  dysentery,  perceived  that  his  end  was  approach- 
ing ;  upon  which  he  said,  "  Shame  on  me  that  I  did  not 
die  in  one  of  the  many  battles  I  have  fought,  but  am  re- 
served to  die  with  disgrace  the  death  of  a  sick  cow !  At  least 
put  on  my  armour  of  proof,  gird  the  sword  by  my  side,  place 
the  helmet  on  my  head,  let  me  have  my  shield  in  my  left 
hand,  and  my  gold-inlaid  battle-axe  in  my  right  hand,  that 
the  bravest  of  soldiers  may  die  in  a  soldier's  garb."  Thus 
he  spoke,  and  when  armed  according  to  his  desire,  he  gave 
up  the  ghost  *.  As  Waltheof,  his  son,  was  of  tender  years, 
the  earldom  was  conferred  on  Tosti,  son  of  Earl  Godwin. 
The  same  year  Algar,  earl  of  Chester,  was  banished,  being 
convicted  of  treason  before  the  king's  coimcil.  He  took 
refuge  with  Griffith,  king  of  North  Wales,  and  returning 
with  him,  they  burnt  Hereford  and  the  church  of  St. 
Ethelbert. 

[a.d.  1057.]  Afterwards,  Edward  [Etheling],  the  son  of 
Echnund  Ironside,  came  into  England,  and  he  died  very 
soon,  and  was  buried  in  St.  Paul's  Minster  at  London.     He 

1  This  ttory  may  perhaps  be  considered  more  questionable  than  others 
which  rest  on  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  sole  authority.  The  Smcon  Chronicle 
relates  that  Earl  GK>dwin  was  seized  with  sudden  indisposition  and  became 
speechless  at  the  king's  table,  and  died  a  few  days  afterwards ;  but  it  is 
silent  about  the  circumstances  which  giro  the  alleged  judicial  character  to  his 
death.  *  See  note,  p.  204. 


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906  HEHST  OF  HUHmNQDOH.  [BOOK  yi« 

was  the  fittfaer  of  Margaret,  queen  of  Scotland,  and  of  Edgar 
fitheling :  Margaret  was  ihe  modier  of  Matilda,  queen  of 
England,  and  of  Darid^  the  aecomplidied  king  of  the  SGot& 
At  ^at  time  also  died  LeoMc,  the  renowned  ^uA  of  Chests, 
whose  wife  Godiva,  a  name  meriting  endless  fame,  was  of 
distingnished  wortli,  and  fbnnded  an  abhey  at  CoyentrT, 
idiich  die  enridied  with  immense  treasures  g£  silver  aad 
gold.  She  also  built  the  ehureh  at  Stow,  under  the  hill  at 
Lincoln ',  and  many  others.  The  earidom  of  Chester  was 
granted  to  his  son  Algar. 

[a.d.  1058.]  In  the  twenty-second  year  of  King  Edward^s 
reign,  when  Philip  was  king  of  France,  on  the  death  of  his 
£Bithar  Hemy,  WiUiam,  duke  of  Ncnmandy,  subjugated 
Maine.  Harold  crossing  the  sea  to  Flanders,  was  driyen  by 
a  |toim  an  the  coast  of  Ponlhieu.  The  Earl  of  that  pro- 
vince arrested  him,  and  hrought  him  to  William,  duke  of 
Normandy.  Whereupon  Harold  took  a  solemn  oath  to 
William  upon  the  most  hoLj  relics  of  saints  that  he  would 
many  his  daught^,  and  on  the  death  of  King  Edward  would 
aid  his  designs  upon  En^nd.  Harold  was  entertained 
with  great  honour  and  received  many  magnificent  gifts. 
However,  after  his  return  to  England,  he  was  guilty  of  per- 
jury^. The  year  following,  Harold  and  his  brother  Tosti 
made  an  irruption  into  Wales;  and  the  people  of  that  country 
were  reduced  to  submission  and  delivered  hostages.  After 
that  they  slew  their  king  Griffith,  and  brought  his  head  to 
Hardd,  who  appointed  anoth^  king.  It  happ^ied  the 
same  year  that,  in  the  king*8  palace  at  Winchester,  Tosti 
seized  his  hrother  Harold  by  the  hair  in  the  royal  presence, 
and  while  he  was  serving  the  king  with  wine ;  fer  it  had 
been  a  source  of  envy  and  hatred  that  the  king  dsM^wed  a 

^  **  Sub  promontorio."  Bisbop  Taimer  sayi,  "  From  tbw  expression  one 
would  guess  tbat  Henry  of  Huntingdon  places  Stowe  under  lincobi  Hill, 
Imt  it  is  pretty  evident  tbat  it  was  in  the  bisbop's  manor  by  Trent  side." 
The  priory  of  Stowe  or  Man  Stowe  was  aanezed  to  Bynaham  Abbey  in  Ox- 
fordsbire. 

*  Though  the  SaxoB  Gbroniele  it  aomewbat  diffuse  in  its  aooount  of  the 
acta  of  Earl  €(o4win  and  bis  sens,  it  contains  ne  reference  at  all  to  Harold^a 
visit  to  the  court  of  Williaas,  duke  o^  Normandy,  during  which  this  solemn 
renunciation  of  any  claims  to  the  crown  of  Bnghmd  is  alleged  to  have  taken 
place.  WilHam  oc  Malmabury  gives  a  detailed  account  of  Harold's  ad^ea- 
tures  in  Normandy. 


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A.1>.  1064-5.]   YTOLEKCE  OF  BABT.  0OiyWIN*8  SONS.  W7 

higher  regard  for  Harold,  thov^  Tosti  was  the  elder  brother, 
"^^^refore  in  a  sudden  paroxysm  of  passion  he  could  not 
rdGrain  from  this  attack  on  his  brother.  But  the  kmg  pre- 
dicted that  their  ruin  was  at  hand,  and  that  the  v^igeanee 
<^  the  Almighty  would  be  no  longer  deferred.  Such  was 
tile  CTuelty  of  these  brotibers  that  when  they  saw  a  weDr 
ordered  farm,  they  ordered  the  owner  to  be  killed  in  the 
ni^t  with  his  wbole  family,  and  took  possession  of  ^e 
property  of  the  deceased :  and  these  men  were  the  justici- 
airies  of  the  realm !  Tosti  departed  from  the  kmg  and  his 
Inotha:  in  great  anger  and  went  to  Hereford,  where  Harold 
had  purveyed  large  supf^es  for  the  royal  use.  Thero  he 
butdiered  all  his  brother's  servants,  and  inek>sed  a  head  or 
an  arm  in  each  of  the  vessels  ccnxtaming  wine,  mead,  ale, 
pi^ent,  mulbeny  wine,  and  cider,  sen^g  a  message  to 
the  king  that  when  he  came  to  his  farm  he  would  find 
plenty  of  salt  meat,  and  that  he  would  bring  more  with  him\ 
For  this  horrible  crime,  the  kii^  commanded  him  to  be 
banisdied  and  outlawed. 

[a.d.  1066.]  In  ihe  twenty-fourth  year  of  King  Edward^ 
the  Northumbrians  hearing  tiiese  accounts  expelled  Tosti, 
their  earl,  who  had  caused  much  blooddied  and  ruin  among 
them.  They  slew  all  his  bousdbold,  both  Danes  and  Eng- 
lish, and  seized  his  treasures  and  arms  at  York,  and  they 
made  Morkar,  the  son  of  Earl  Al^or,  their  ead.  Then  he 
led  the  Northumbrians,  and  with  theon  the  men  of  Lincoln- 
shire, Nottinghamshire,  and  Derbyshire,  as  far  as  North- 
ampt(»i ;  and  his  brother  Edwin  joined  him  with  the  men  of 
his  earldom  and  many  Welsh.  When  Ead  Harold  met 
them,  they  sent  him  to  the  king,  with  messengers  of  their 
own,  intreating  Ihat  th^  mi^t  have  Moikar  mc  their  earL 
This  ihe  king  granted,  and  commissioned  Harold  to  return 
to  Northampton  to  give  them  assurance  of  it.  Meanwhile, 
they  did  not  spare  that  district,  burning,  slaying,  plimdering, 

1  Kr.  Petrie  remsrki :  **  TUi  story  leems  an  imnentkm ;  k  ii  eertamlT' 
SBtroe  M  &r  as  relates  to  tbe  bamsluaent  of  Tosti,  wbkh  took  plAce  under 
fiur  different  circumstances ;  for  this  reference  majr  be  made  to  the  life  of 
King  Edward  by  an  anonymous  writer  of  his  own  age.  The  story  of  the 
CDttiDg  off  men's  heads,  &c,  seems  to  be  borrowed  from  a  horrid  cmelty 
perpetrated  by  Garadoe,  the  son  of  Griffith,  related  by  Florence  of  Worcei^ 
tcr  under  the  year  1066." — Petrie  Monument  Britan. 


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908  HENBY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  VT. 

and  carrying  off  with  them,  after  their  petition  was 
granted,  many  thousand  souls,  so  that  this  part  of  the  king- 
dom was  impoverished  for  many  years.  Tosti  and  his  wife 
fled  to  the  court  of  Baldwin,  in  Flanders,  and  there  wintered. 
In  the  year  of  our  Lord  1066,  the  Lord,  who  ruleth  all 
things,  accomplished  what  He  had  long  designed  with  re- 
spect to  the  English  nation ;  giving  them  up  to  destruction 
by  the  fierce  and  crafty  race  of  the  Normans.  For  when 
the  church  of  St.  Peter  at  Westminster  had  been  conse- 
crated on  Holy  Linocents'  day,  and  soon  afterwards  King 
Edward  departed  this  life  on  the  eve  of  Epiphany,  and  was 
interred  in  the  same  church,  which  he  had  buUt  and  en- 
dowed with  great  possessions,  some  of  the  English  sought 
to  make  Edgar  Etheling  king ;  but  Harold,  relying  on  his 
power  and  his  pretensions  by  birth,  seized  the  crown  ^. 
Meanwhile,  William,  duke  of  Normandy,  was  inwardly 
irritated  and  deeply  incensed,  for  three  reasons.  First, 
because  Godwin  and  his  sons  had  dishonoured  and  mur- 
dered his  kinsman  Alfred.  Secondly,  because  they  had 
driven  out  of  England  Robert  the  bishop,  and  Odo  the 
earl,  and  all  the  other  Frenchmen.  Thirdly,  because 
Harold,  committing  perjuiy,  had  usurped  the  kingdom, 
which  by  right  of  relationship  belonged  to  himself.  Duke 
William,  therefore,  assembling  the  principal  men  of  Nor- 
mandy, called  on  them  to  aid  him  in  the  conquest  of 
England.  As  they  were  entering  the  council  chamber, 
William  Fitz-Osbert,  the  Duke's  steward,  threw  himself  in 
their  way,  representing  that  the  expedition  to  England  was 
a  very  serious  undertaking,  for  the  English  were  a  most 
warlike  people;  and  argued  vehemently  against  the  very 
few  who  were  disposed  to  embark  in  the  project  of  invading 
England.  The  barons,  hearing  this,  were  highly  delighted, 
and  pledged  their  faitii  to  him  that  they  would  all  concur 
in  what  he  should  say.  Upon  which  he  presented  himself 
at  their  head  before  the  Dulce,  and  thus  he  addressed  him : 
"  I  am  ready  to  follow  you  devotedly  with  all  my  people  in 
this  expedition."  All  the  great  men  of  Normandy  were 
thus  pledged  to  what  he  promised,  and  a  numerous  fleet 

*  Florence  of  Worcester  founds  Harold's  pretensions  on  the  choice  of  the 
late  King  Edward :  **  Haraldus — quern  rex  ante  suam  decessionem  regni 
■occessorem  elegerat." 


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A.D.  1066.]  BATTLE   Of  STANFORD  BRIDOE.  209 

was  equipped  at  the  port  called  St.  Valeiy.  Upon  hearing 
this,  the  warlike  Harold  fitted  out  a  fleet  to  meet  that  of 
Duke  WiUiam.  Meanwhile,  Earl  Tosti  entered  the  Hum- 
ber  with  60  ships ;  but  Earl  Edwin  came  upon  him  with 
his  troops  and  put  him  to  flight.  He  escaped  to  Scotland, 
where  he  fell  in  with  Harold,  king  of  Norway  S  with  300 
ships.  Tosti  wa^  oveijoyed,  and  tendered  him  his  alle- 
giance. Then  they  joined  their  forces  and  came  up  the 
Humber,  as  far  as  York,  near  which  they  were  encoim- 
tered  by  the  Earls  Edwin  and  Morcar ;  the  place  where 
the  battle  was  fought  is  still  shown  on  the  south  side 
of  the  city.  Here  Harold,  king  of  Norway,  and  Tosti, 
his  ally,  gained  the  day.  When  this  intelligence  reached 
Harold,  king  of  England,  he  advanced  wiSi  a  powerful 
army,  and  came  up  with  the  invaders  at  Stanford  Bridge. 
The  battle  was  desperately  fought,  the  armies  being  en- 
gaged from  daybreak  to  noonday,  when,  after  fierce  attacks 
on  both  sides,  the  Norwegians  were  forced  to  give  way 
before  the  superior  nimibers  of  the  EngUsh,  but  retreated 
in  good  order.  Being  driven  across  the  river^,  the  living 
trampling  on  the  corpses  of  the  slain,  they  resolutely  made 
a  firesh  stand.  Here  a  single  Norwegian,  whose  name 
ought  to  have  been  preserved,  took  post  on  a  bridge,  and 
hewing  down  more  than  forty  of  the  EngUsh  with  a  battle- 
axe,  his  country's  weapon,  stayed  the  advance  of  the  whole 
English  army  till  the  ninth  horn:.  At  last  some  one  came 
under  the  bridge  in  a  boat,  and  thrust  a  spear  into  him, 
through  the  chinks  of  the  flooring.  The  English  having 
gained  a  passage,  King  Harold  and  Tosti  were  slain ;  and 
Sieir  whole  army  were  either  slaughtered,  or,  being  taken 
prisoners,  were  burnt  ^ 

Harold,  king  of  England,  returned  to  York  the  same 
day,  with  great  triumph.  But  while  he  was  at  dinner,  a 
messenger  arrived  with  the  news  that  William,  duke  of 
Normandy,  had  landed  on  the  south  coast*,  and  had  built 
a  fort  at  Hastings.      The  king  hastened  southwards  to 

'  Harald  Hard-raad,  so  called  to  distinguish  him  from  Harald-Har&ger, 
who  was  contemporary  with  Alfired  the  Great.  '  The  Ouse. 

'  The  hattle  of  Stanford  Bridge  was  fought  on  the  eve  of  St.  Matthew, 
20th  Septemher,  1066. 

*  William  landed  at  Peyensey  on  Vichaelmas  ere  of  the  same  year. 

P 


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mo  HENBT  OF  HUKTINOIK>K.  [BOOK  YU 

oppose  him,  and  drew  up  his  army  on  level  ground  in  that 
neighbom'hood.  Duke  William  coinmenced  the  attack 
with  five  squadrons  of  his  splendid  cavaby,  a  terrible  onset; 
but  first  he  addressed  them  to  this  effect :  '*  What  I  have 
to  say  to  you,  ye  Normans,  the  toivest  of  nations,  does 
not  spring  from  any  doubt  of  your  valour  or  uncertamly  of 
victory,  which  never  by  any  chance  or  obstacle  esoa|>e€l 
your  efforts.  If,  indeed,  once  only  you  had  failed  of  jcon^ 
quering,  it  might  be  necessary  to  inflame  your  courage  by 
exhortation.  But  how  little  does  the  inherent  spirit  of 
your  race  require  to  be  roused!  Most  valiant  of  men, 
what  availed  the  power  of  the  Frank  king,  with  all  his 
people,  from  Lorraine  to  Spain,  against  Hastings,  my 
predecessor  ?  What  he  wanted  of  the  territory  of  France 
he  appropriated  to  himself;  what  he  chose,  only,  was  left 
to  the  king;  what  he  had,  he  held  during  his  pleasure; 
when  he  was  satisfied,  he  relinquished  it,  and  looked  for 
something  better.  Did  not  RoUo,  my  ancestor,  the  founder 
of  our  nation,  with  your  progenitors,  conquer  at  Paris  the 
king  of  the  Franks  in  the  heart  of  his  dominions ;  nor 
could  he  obtain  any  respite  until  he  humbly  offered  pos- 
session of  the  country  which  from  you  is  called  Normandy, 
with  the  hand  of  his  daughter  ?  Did  not  your  fathers  take 
prisoner  the  king  of  the  French,  and  detain  him  at  Eouen 
till  he  restored  Normandy  to  your  Duke  Eichard,  then  a 
boy ;  with  this  stipulation,  that  in  every  conference  between 
the  King  of  France  and  the  Duke  of  Normandy,  the  duke 
should  have  his  sword  by  his  side,  while  the  king  should 
not  be  allowed  so  much  as  a  dagger  ?  This  concession  your 
fathers  compelled  the  great  king  to  submit  to,  as  binding 
for  ever.  Did  not  the  same  duke  lead  your  fathers  to 
Mirmande,  at  the  foot  of  the  Alps,  and  enforce  submission 
from  the  lord  of  the  town,  his  son-in-law,  to  his  own  wife, 
the  duke's  daughter  ?  Nor  Was  it  enough  to  conquer  moiv 
tals;  for  he  overcame  the  devil  himself,  with  whom  he 
wrestled,  and  cast  down  and  boimd  him,  leaving  him  a 
shameful  spectacle  to  angels.  But  why  do  I  go  back  to 
former  times  ?  When  you,  in  our  own  time,  engaged  the 
French  at  Mortemer,  did  not  the  French  prefer  flight  to 
battle,  and  use  their  spurs  instead  of  their  swords ;  while 
— Ralph,  the  French  commander,  being  slain — you  reaped 


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A.D.  1066.]  BATTLE   OF   HASTINGS.  Sll 

the  fruits  of  victory,  the  honour  and  the  spoil,  as  natural 
results  of  your  wonted  success  ?  Ah !  let  any  one  of  the 
English  whom  our  predecessors,  both  Danes  and  Nor- 
wegians, have  defeat^  in  a  hundred  battles,  come  for^ 
and  show  that  the  race  of  RoUo  ever  suffered  a  defeat  from 
ills  time  until  now,  and  I  will  submit  and  retreat.  Is  it  not 
flhameful,  then,  that  a  people  accustomed  to  be  conquered, 
a  people  ignorant  of  the  art  of  war,  a  people  not  even  in 
possession  of  arrows,  should  moke  a  show  of  being  arrayed 
in  order  of  battle  against  you,  most  valiant  ?  Is  it  not  a 
shame  that  this  King  Harold,  perjurftd  as  he  was  in  yom* 
presence,  should  dare  to  show  his  face  to  you?  It  is 
a  wonder  to  me  that  you  have  been  allowed  to  see  those 
who  by  a  horrible  crime  beheaded  your  relations  and 
Alfred  my  kinsman,  and  that  their  own  accursed  heads 
are  still  on  their  shoulders.  Raise,  then,  your  standards, 
my  brave  men,  and  set  no  bounds  to  your  merited  rage. 
Let  the  lightning  of  your  gloiy  flash,  and  the  thunders  of 
your  onset  be  heard  from  east  to  west,  and  be  the  avengers 
of  the  noble  blood  which  has  been  spilled." 

Duke  William  had  not  concluded  his  harangue,  when  all 
the  squadrons,  inflamed  with  rage,  rushed  on  the  enemy 
with  indescribable  impetuosity,  and  left  the  duke  speaking 
to  himself!  Before  fiie  armies  closed  for  the  fight,  one 
Taillefer,  sportively  brandishing  swords  before  Hie  Eng- 
lish troops,  while  they  were  lost  in  amazement  at  his  gam- 
bols, slew  one  of  their  standard-bearers.  A  second  time 
one  of  the  enemy  fell.  The  third  time  he  was  slain  himself  *. 

'  This  fierio-comic  prelude  to  the  battle  is  also  noticed  in  the  Kormaa- 
French  metrical  History  of  Geoffry  Gaimar,  as  well  as  in  a  Latin  poem  on 
the  battle  of  Hastings^  both  of  which  are  published  in  M.  Petrie's  collection. 
It  is  also  mentioned  in  Waoe,  ''  Histoire  des  Dues  de  Normandie,"  p.  214. 
It  might  be  supposed  that  Taillefer  was  Duke  William's  jester ;  indeed  this 
Latin  poem  calls  him  *'  Histrio,"  the  Norman  **  Joglece."  The  ktter  in 
worth  quoting : — 
*'  Un  des  Franceis  done  se  hasta 

^Devant  les  altres  chevalcha. 

Taillefer  ert  cil  apelez, 

JogienB  estait,  hai^i  asses. 

Annes  avoit  e  bon  che^al ; 

8iert  hardiz  e  noble  vassaL 

Devant  les  altres  cil  se  mist ; 

Deyant  Engleis  merveiUes  fist 


La  lance  pris  par  le  tuet 
Gomme  si  «e  fust  un  bastunet : 
Bncontoemout,  halt  Ven  geta, 
£  par  le  fer  recev^  la. 
Trais  fez  issi  geta  sa  lance : 
La  quarte  feiz,  mult  pr^s  s'avance, 
Entre  les  Engleis  la  lanca, 
Parmi  le  cors  en  un  naffira,"  &c. 

p  a 


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212  HENRY   OF   HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  VI. 

Then  the  ranks  met;  a  cloud  of  arrows  carried  death 
among  them;  the  clang  of  sword-strokes  followed;  hel- 
mets gleamed,  and  weapons  clashed.  But  Harold  had 
formed  his  whole  army  in  close  colmnn,  making  a  rampart 
which  the  Normans  could  not  penetrate.  Duke  William, 
therefore,  commanded  his  troops  to  make  a  feigned  retreat. 
In  their  flight  they  happened  unawares  on  a  deep  trench, 
which  was  treacherously  covered,  into  which  numhers  feU 
and  perished.  While  the  English  were  engaged  in  pursuit 
the  main  body  of  the  Normans  broke  the  centre  of  the 
enemy's  line,  which  being  perceived  by  those  in  pursuit 
over  the  concealed  trench,  when  they  were  consequently 
recalled  most  of  them  fell  there.  Duke  WiUiam  also  com- 
manded his  bowmen  not  to  aim  their  arrows  directly  at  the 
enemy,  but  to  shoot  them  in  the  air,  that  their  cloud  might 
spread  darkness  over  the  enemy's  ranks;  this  occasioned 
great  loss  to  the  EngUsh.  Twenty  of  the  bravest  knights 
also  pledged  their  troth  to  each  other  that  they  would  cut 
through  the  English  troops,  and  capture  the  royal  ensign 
called  The  Standard.  In  this  attack  the  greater  part  were 
slain ;  but  the  remainder,  hewing  a  way  with  their  swords, 
captured  the  standard.  Meanwhile,  a  shower  of  arrows  fell 
round  King  Harold,  and  he  himself  was  pierced  in  the  eye. 
A  crowd  of  horsemen  now  burst  in,  and  the  king,  already 
wounded,  was  slain.  With  htm  fell  Earl  Gm-th  and  Earl 
Leofiic,  his  brothers.  After  the  defeat  of  the  English 
army,  and  so  great  a  victory,  the  Londoners  submitted 
peaceably  to  WiUiam,  and  he  was  crowned  at  Westminster, 
by  Aldred,  archbishop  of  York.  Thus  the  hand  of  the 
Lord  brought  to  pass  the  change  which  a  remarkable  comet 
had  foreshadowed  in  the  beginning  of  the  same  year ;  as  it 
was  said,  "  In  the  year  1066,  all  England  was  alarmed  by 
a  flaming  comet."  The  battle  was  fought  in  the  month  of 
October,  on  the  feast  of  St.  Calixtus  [Oct.  14].  King  Wil- 
liam afterwards  foimded  a  noble  abbey  on  the  spot,  which 
obtained  the  fitting  name  of  Battle  Abbey. 
-*•  King  William  crossed  the  sea  the  year  following,  carrying 
with  him  hostages  and  much  treasure.     He  came  back  the 

However,  the  spirited  ballad  of  Ludwig  Uliland  represents  Taillefer  as  a 
groom,  who  for  his  minstrelsy  was  knighted  by  William.  See  the  Poons 
of  Ludwig  Uhland,  translated  br  Flatt    Leipsic^  1848. 


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A.D.  1067-71.]        WILLIAM  THE   CONQUEROR.  21S 

same  year,  and  divided  the  land  amongst  his  soldiers.  And 
now  Edgar  the  Etheling  went  into  Scotland,  with  many- 
followers,  and  his  sister  Margaret  was  betrothed  to  the 
king  of  die  Scots  [a.d.  1068].  The  king  having  given  the 
earldom  of  Northmnberland  to  Earl  Kobert,  the  provincials 
slew  him  and  900  of  his  men;  upon  which  Edgar  the 
Etheling,  with  all  the  people  of  Northumberland,  marched 

^  to  York,  and  the  townsmen  made  peace  with  him  ;  but  the 

king  advancing  northward  with  an  army  sacked  the  city, 
and  made  great  slaughter  of  the  rebellious  inhabitants,  and 
Edgar  retired  to  Scotland. 

fii  the  third  year  of  King  William,  the  two  sons  of  Sweyn, 
king  of  Denmark,  and  his  brother.  Earl  Osbert,  sailed  up 
the  Humber  with  300  ships,  and  were  joined  by  Earl 
Waltheof  and  Edgar  the  Etheling.  The  forces  of  the 
Danes  and  English  being  united,  they  took  York  Castle, 
and  having  slain  numbers  of  the  French,  they  carried  off 
their  chief  men  prisoners  to  their  ships,  with  the  treasure 
they  had  taken,  and  wintered  in  the  country  between  the 
Ouse  and  the  Trent.  However,  the  king  coming  upon 
them  drove  them  out,  and  reduced  the  English  of  fiiat 
province,  and  Earl  Waltheof  made  his  peace  with  the  king. 
The  year  following,  on  the  death  of  Baldwin,  earl  of 
Flanders,  whose  daughter  King  William  married,  he  was 
succeeded  by  his  son  Amulph,  who  was  supported  by 
William,  king  of  England,  and  Philip,  king  of  France. 
But  his  brother  Kobert,  the  Frisian,  made  war  upon  him 
and  slew  him,  together  with  WiUiam  Fitz-Osbert,  be- 
fore-mentioned, and  many  thousand  troops  of  both  the 
kings. 

[A.D.  1071.]  In  the  fifth  year  of  King  William,  the  Earls 
Morcar  and  Edwin  took  to  plundering  in  the  open  country 

^  and  the  woods  ^.     Edwin  was  slfdn  by  his  own  followers, 

and  Morcar,  with  Hereward  and  Bishop  Elwine,  took  refuge 
in  Ely.  The  king  came  there  with  an  army,  and  beset  it 
both  by  land  and  water ;  and  having  constructed  a  bridge 
and  built  a  fort  with  great  skill,  which  stands  at  the  pre- 

'  " ».  e.  Threw  oflf  their  allegiance  to  the  Norman  usurper,  and  became 
voluntary  outlaws.     The  habits  of  these  outlaws,  or  at  least  of  their  de- 
.  icendants  in  the  next  century,  are  well  described  in  the  romance  of  '  Ivan- 

•r  hoe.*  "^'Ingram. 


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ftl4  HENRY  OF  HUNTIWODON.  [BOOK  VI. 

sent  time*,  he  gained  an  enti^ance  into  the  island,  and  took 
prisoners  those  I  have  named,  except  Hereward,  who  drew 
off  his  people  with  great  resolution*.  The  year  following, 
the  king  led  an  army  into  Scotland,  hoth  hy  land  and  sea ; 
and  Malcolm,  king  of  the  Scots,  did  him  fealty  and  delivered 
hostages.  The  next  year,  the  king  led  an  army  of  En^sh 
and  French  into  Maine,  which  the  English  wasted,  burning 
the  villages  and  destroying  the  vineyards,  and  the  province 
submitted  to  the  king.  The  year  after,  the  king  went  into 
Normandy,  and  Edgar  the  Etheling  was  reconciled  with 
him,  and  abode  some  time  in  his  court 

[a.d.  1075.]  In  the  ninth  year  of  King  William,  Edph, 
who  had  been  made  earl  of  East-Anglia^,  conspired  yfiih 
Earl  Waltheof,  and  Roger,  son  of  William  Fitz-Osbert,  ta 
dethrone  the  king.  Earl  Ralph  had  married  his  sister,  at 
whose  nuptials  Ihe  rebellion  was  contrived.  But  the  prin- 
cipal men  of  the  realm  strenuously  opposed  it ;  and  Earl 
Ralph,  embarking  at  Norwich,  sailed  for  Denmai-k*.  When 
the  king  came  over  to  England,  he  threw  his  kinsman  Earl 
Roger  into  prison,  but  Earl  Waltheof  was  beheaded  at 
Winchester,  and  he  was  buried  at  Croyiand.  Of  the  rest 
who  were  present  at  the  ill-fated  marriage  feast,  many  were 
banished  and  many  deprived  of  sight.  Meanwhile,  Earl 
Ralph,  accompanied  by  Canute,  son  of  Sweyn,  king  of 
Denmark,  and  Earl  Haco,  returned  to  England  with  a  fleet 
of  300  ships,  but  not  daring  to  attack  King  William,  they 
sailed  for  Flanders.  The  same  year  Queen  Edith  died, 
and  was  buried  near  her  husband.  King  Edward,  at  West- 
minster. 

[a.d.  1076.]  The  year  following.  King  William  went  over 
iSiie  sea,  and  laid  siege  to  Dol ;  but  the  Bretons  defended 
the  castle  stoutly,  tifi  the  King  of  France  came  to  their 
reHef.  Soon  afterwards  the  King  of  France  and  King  Wil- 
liam came  to  terms.     The  King  of  the  Scots,  also,  ravaged 

*  Probably  constructed  of  timber,  but  it  was  built  less  than  40  years  be- 
fcre  tbis  was  written. 

'  The  exploits  of  this  &mou8  outlaw  are  celebreled  in  a  Gallo-N'onnim- 
poem,  printed  by  Sparke  in  Caenob.  Burg.  Hist 

^  The  ancient  kingdom  of  East-Anglia  was  now  resolved  into  the  oarl- 
doms  of  Norfolk  and  Suffolk. 

^  According  to  Florence  of  Worcester  and  Suneon  of  Durham,  he  sailed 
.  first  to  Brittany. 


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iuD.  1076-84.]   RKIGN  OF  WILLIAM  THE  CONQUEROR.    215 

Northumberland  as  far  as  the  Tjne,  and  carried  off  a  great 
number  of  captives  ajid  much  booty.  Eobert,  son  of  King 
William,  having  raised  troops  against  his  faiher,.  the  king 
was  thrown  &om  Ms  horse  in  an  engagement  at  the  castle 
of  Gerbervy,  in  iVance,  ^ere  also  William,  the  king's  son, 
sad  mansy  of  his  followers  were  wounded,  and  the  king 
cursed  h^  son  Robert.  Moreover,  the  Northumbrians 
treacherously  killed  Walcher,  bishop  of  Durham,  and  100 
men,  at  a  certain  court  (gemot)  peaceably  assembled  on  the 
Tyn^. 

[A.D.  1081.]  King  William,  in  the  fifteenth  year  of  his 
reign,  led  an  army  into  Wales,  and  reduced  it  to  submis- 
sion. Afterwards  he  threw  his  brother.  Bishop  Odo,  into 
prison ;  his  queen,  Matilda,  also  died  [a.i>.  1083] ;  and  the 
king  levied  a  tax  of  six  shillings  on  every  hide  of  land 
tiiroughout  Eng^d.  At  this  time  Thurstan,  abbot  of 
Glastonbury,  perpetrated  an  atrocious  crime,  causing  three 
monks  to  be  skin,  though  they  clung  to  the  altar;  and 
eighteen  others  were  wounded,  so  that  the  blood  raast  dowB 
the  steps  of  the  sanctuary,  on  the  floor  of  the  church. 

In  the  eighteenth  year  of  King  William's  reign,  he  brou^ 
over  such  an  immense  army  of  Normans,  French,  and  'Bee- 
tons,  that  it  was  a  wonder  how  the  land  could  supply  them 
with  food.  He  had  heard  reports  that  Canute,  king  of 
Denmark  ^  and  Eobert  the  Frisi^m,  earl  of  Flanders,  had 
iormed  the  design  of  invading  and  subduing  England ;  but 
when,  by  God's  will,  the  armamcmt  was  dispersed^,  he  dis- 
missed the  greatest  part  of  his  troops  to  tiieir  own  coun- 
tries. The  king  being  now  all  powerful,  he  sent  justiciaries 
through  every  shire,  tilat  is,  every  county  of  En^and,  and 
eaused  them  to  inquire  on  oath  how  many  hides,  tJiat  is, 
acres  sufficient  for  one  plough  hr  a  year,  there  were  in 
ev^y  vill,  and  how  many  cattle  ;  he  made  them  also 
inquire  how  muich  each  city,  castle,  village,  viU,  river, 
marsh,  and  wood  was  worth  in  yearly  rent.  All  these  par- 
ticulars having  been  written  on  parchment,  the  record  was 

'  "  With  Clave  Kyrre,  king  of  Norway.  Vide  Antiq.  Celto-Scand.,  p. 
226."— /Ti^mm. 

'  By  a  mutiny  in  the  Danish  fleets  which  ended  in  the  murder  of  Canute 
after  hu  return  to  Dsstauxk, 


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816  HENKY   OF  HUNTINODON.  [BOOK  VI. 

brought  to  the  king  ^  and  deposited  in  the  treasury,  where 
it  is  preserved  to  this  day.  The  same  year  [1085],  Maurice 
was  made  bishop  of  London ;  he  began  the  building  of  the 
great  church  which  is  not  yet  completed*. 

The  noble  King  William,  in  the  nineteenth  year  of  his 
reign,  held  his  court  as  usual  at  Gloucester  during  Christ- 
mas, at  Winchester  during  Easter,  and  during  Whitsuntide 
at  London  (Westminster),  where  he  knighted  his  youngest 
son  Henry.  Afterwards*  he  received  the  homage  of  all  the 
principal  landowners  of  England,  and  received  their  oaths 
of  fealty  vnthout  regard  to  those  imder  whom  they  held 
their  lands.  And  then  the  king,  having  amassed  large  sums 
of  money  upon  every  pretext  he  could  find,  just  or  unjust, 
passed  over  to  Normandy. 

[a.d.  1087.]  Li  the  twenty-first  year  of  the  reign  of  King 
WiUiam,  when  the  Normans  had  accomplished  the  righteous 
will  of  God  on  the  EngUsh  nation,  and  there  was  now  no 
prince  of  the  ancient  royal  race  Hving  in  Englamd,  and  all 
the  English  were  brought  to  a  reluctant  submission,  so 
that  it  was  a  disgrace  even  to  be  called  an  Englishman, 
the  instrument  of  Providence  in  fiilfiUing  its  designs  was 
removed  firom  the  world.  God  had  chosen  the  Normans 
to  humble  the  English  nation,  because  He  perceived  that 
they  were  more  fierce  than  any  other  people.  For  their 
character  is  such  tliat  when  they  have  so  crushed  their 
enemies  that  they  can  reduce  them  no  lower,  they  bring 
themselves  and  their  own  lands  to  poverty  and  waste ;  so 
that  the  Norman  lords,  when  foreign  hostilities  have 
ceased,  as  their  fierce  temper  never  abates,  turn  their  hos- 
tilities against  their  own  people ;  which  is  apparent,  with 
continually  increasing  distinctness,  in  Normandy  as  well  as 
in  England,  in  Apulia,  Calabria,  Sicily,  and  Antioch,  those 
fine  counti'ies  which  the  Almighty  has  subjected  to  them. 
Li  England,  at  this  time,  extortionate  tolls  and  most  bur- 
thensome  taxes  were  multiplied,  and  all  the  great  lords 
were  so  blinded    by  an   inordinate  desire  of   amassmg 

'  At  Winchester ;  whence  the  Doomsday  book  is  called  also  "  Eotulus," 
or  «  Liber  Wintoniae." 
'  The  Old  St  Paul's.  »  At  Salisbury. 


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A.D.  1087.]    DEATH  AND   CHARACTER   OF  KING  WILLIAM.      317 

wealth,  that  it  might  be  truly  said  of  them,  "Whence  it 
was  got  no  one  asked,  but  get  it  they  must ;  the  more  they 
talked  of  right,  the  more  wrong  they  did."  Those  whose 
title  was  justiciaries  were  the  foimtains  of  all  injustice. 
The  sheriffs  and  judges,  whose  office  it  was  to  administer 
the  law,  were  more  greedy  than  thieves  and  robbers,  and 
more  violent  than  the  most  desperate  culprits.  The  king 
himself,  when  he  had  let  his  lands  to  farm  at  the  dearest 
rate  he  could,  broke  his  agreements,  and,  never  satisfied, 
granted  them  to  any  one  who  bid  higher,  and  then  to 
another  who  offered  &e  highest  rent ;  nor  did  he  care  what 
injiuy  his  officers  infficted  on  the  poor.  This  year  the 
Lord  had  afflicted  England  with  the  two  calamities  of 
pestilence  and  famine,  so  that  those  who  escaped  the  pes- 
tilence died  of  hunger.  King  William  had  crossed  over  to 
France  the  same  year,  and  had  ravaged  the  territories  of 
King  Philip,  and  put  to  death  many  of  his  subjects.  He 
also  burnt  a  stately  castle  called  Mantes,  and  destroyed  all 
the  churches  in  the  town,  with  much  people,  and  two  holy 
hermits  were  burnt  there.  Wherefore  God  in  his  anger 
visited  him  on  his  return  with  sickness,  and  afterwards 
with  death.  We  must  glance  at  both  the  good  and  evil 
deeds  of  this  powerful  king,  in  order  that  we  may  take  ex- 
ample from  the  good  and  warning  from  the  evil 

William  was  the  most  valiant  of  all  the  dukes  of  Nor- 
mandy, the  most  powerful  of  all  the  kings  of  England,  more 
renowned  than  any  of  his  predecessors.  He  was  wise,  but 
crafty ;  rich,  but  covetous ;  glorious,  but  his  ambition  was 
never  satisfied.  Though  humble  to  the  servants  of  God, 
he  was  obdurate  to  those  who  withstood  him.  Earls  and 
nobles  he  threw  into  prison,  bishops  and  abbots  he  deprived 
of  their  possessions :  he  did  not  even  spare  his  own  brother; 
and  no  one  dared  to  oppose  his  will.  He  wrung  thousands 
of  gold  and  silver  from  his  most  powerful  vasssJs,  and 
harassed  his  subjects  with  the  toil  of  building  castles  for 
himself.  If  any  one  killed  a  stag  or  a  wild  boar,  his  eyes 
were  put  out,  and  no  one  presumed  to  complain.  But 
beasts  of  chace  he  cherished  as  if  they  were  his  children ; 
so  that  to  form  the  himting  ground  of  the  New  Forest  he 
caused  churches  and  villages  to  be  destroyed,  and,  driving 
out  the  people,  made  it  an  habitation  for  deer.    When  he 


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318  HENRY   OP  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  VI. 

laundered  his  subjects,  not  urged  by  his  wants,  but  by 
excessive  aMuice,  however  they  might  curse  him  in  the 
bitterness  of  their  hearts,  he  set  at  noo^t  their  muttered 
revenge.  It  behoved  every  one  to  si^mit  to  his  will  who 
had  any  regard  for  his  favour,  or  for  his  own  money  or 
lands,  or  even  his  life^ 

Alas !  how  much  is  it  to  be  deplored  that  any  man, 
seeing  that  he  is  but  a  worm  of  the  dust,  should  so  swell 
with  pride  as,  forgetful  of  death,  to  exalt  himself  thus  abore 
all  his  fellow-m(»rtals.  Normandy  was  his  by  n^t  of 
inheritance ;  Maine  he  subdued  by  force  of  arms ;  Brittany 
paid  him  fealty ;  he  was  monarch  of  all  En^and,  so  that 
there  was  not  a  single  hide  of  land  in  it  of  which  he  had 
not  an  account  of  the  owner's  name  and  what  it  was  wordi^. 
Scotland  he  reduced  to  subjection,  and  Wales  submiimvely 
rendered  him  allegiance.  Yet  he  so  firmly  preserved  th6 
peace,  that  a  girl  laden  with  gold  could  pass  in  safety  from 
one  end  of  England  to  the  oUier.  Homicide,  under  what- 
ever pretext,  was  punished  by  death ;  violent  assaults,  by 
the  loss  of  limbs.  He  built  the  abbey  at  Battle,  which  ha^ 
been  already  mentioned,  and  one  at  Caen,  in  which  he  was 
buried.  His  wife,  Matilda,  also  h^\h  there  a  convent  few 
nuns,  in  which  she  was  int^red.  May  He  have  m^cy  on 
their  souls  who  alone  can  heal  them  a^r  death !  And  you, 
my  readers,  noting  well  the  virtues  and  vices  of  so  great  a 
man,  learn  to  follow  what  is  good  and  eschew  what  is  evil, 

'  Henry  of  Hrmtiogdoii,  in  smnmiDg  np  the  Gonqiieror's  chacacter,  adi»pta 
mncli  tbe  same  language  as  that  which  is  found  in  the  Saxon  Chronicle.  FronL 
hh  position  in  society,  and  hii  living  so  near  die  times  of  which  he  is  now 
speaking,  he  must  have  had  opportunities  of  forming  opinions  of  his  own, 
-which,  dovbtless,  coineided  with  diose  tiie  expression  of  which  he  has  thH» 
borrowed.  It  appears,  ficom  the  language  used  in  the  Chronicle,  that  the. 
character  there  drawn  of  William  I.  was  written  by  one  who  wai  a  dosa 
observer  of  his  administration,  and  had  been  in  his  court  But  he  wrote 
anonymously,  and  probably  with  no  yiew  to  publicity,  while  the  inde* 
pendent  spirit  widi  which  Henry  of  Huntingdon  exhibits  the  tyranny  of 
the  Conqueror  in  thie  histery,  giren  ta  the  world  dncing  the  reign  of  hie  ssn 
Henry  I.,  a  prince  equally  arbitrary,  is,  as  I  h&ve  ekewheie  taken  ocoasio» 
to  remark,  worthy  of  commendation.  William  of  Mahnsbury,  a  writer  oil 
nearly  the  same  age,  whatever  be  his  general  merit,  speaks  of  the  Con- 
queror in  much  more  courtly  phrase,  descants  on  his  liberality  to  the  church, 
ind  sums  up  with  attributing  to  him  one  only  iwU — avarice. 

^  BeCsrring  to  the  fiunout  Dooasday  Boek. 


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AJ5.  1087.]       WILLIAM  TKK  CONQUEBOB*S  WILL.  219^ 

and  Uras  walk  in  Hie  strai^it  path  wMch  leads  to  eternal 
life! 

The  same  year,  Ihe  Tnfidels  in  ^ain  made  a  plundering 
incursion  on  the  Christian  States,  and  seized  large  portions 
of  their  territory.  But  the  Chrisdan  king  Alphonso,  col- 
lecting forces  from  the  faithful  in  all  parts,  recovered  his 
dominions,  slaying  and  expelling  the  Infidels,  and  repairing 
Hie  losses  caused  by  their  inroads.  In  Denmark,  cdso,  an 
event  happened  which  had  never  before  occurred.  The 
Banes  were  guilty  of  treason,  and  faithlessly  murdered  their 
Mng,  Canute,  in  a  monastery. 

WiUiam,  king  of  England,  bequeathed  Normandy  to  his 
eldest  son  Eobert;  the  kingdom  of  England  to  William, 
his  second  son ;  and  tbe  treasure  he  had  amassed  to  his 
third  acm,  Henry,  bv  means  of  which,  having  purchased  a. 
part  of  Normandy  from  his  brother  Bdbert,  he  succeeded 
in  depriving  him  of  his  dominions ;  a  thing  displeasing  to 
God,  but  the  punishment  was  deferred  for  a  time.  William 
divided  his  facer's  treasures,  which  he  found  at  Winchester, 
according  to  his  bequest.  There  were  in  the  treasury 
60,000  pounds  of  silver,  besides  gold  and  jewels,  and  his 
plate  and  wardrpbe.  He  distributed  part  of  this  we^th, 
giving  to  some  churches  ten  gold^i  marks,  to  others  six, 
and  to  the  church  of  every  viU  Eve  shillings ;  and  he  sent 
to  each  coimty  1002.,  to  be  given  in  alms ;  likewise,  accord- 
ing to  his  f^Uher's  will,  aU  prisoners  were  set  at  liberty. 
The  new  king  hdd  his  court  at  London  during  Christmas. 
There  were  present  Lanfranc,  the  archbishop  [of  Canter- 
bury], who  had  consecrated  tiie  king ;  and  Thomas,  ardi- 
bishop  of  York ;  together  with  Maurice,  bishop  of  London  ; 
Walchelm,  of  Winchester ;  Godfrey,  of  Chester ;  Wulnoth, 
the  holy  bishop  of  Worcester ;  William  of  Thetford,  Bo- 
bert  of  Chester,  William  of  Durham,  and  Odo»  bishop  of 
Bayeux,  principal  justiciary  of  all  England ;  as  also  Bemi, 
bishop  of  Lincoln,  of  whom  I  am  led  to  give  a  sho»t. 
account 

The  king  [William  I.]  had  given  to  Bemi,  who  was  a 
monk  of  Fecamp,  the  bisho|»ic  of  Dorchester,  which  is 
lituated  on  the  Thmnes.  But  as  that  see  is  larger  than 
any  other  in  England,  extending  from  the  Thames  to  the 
Humber,  it  seemed  to  the  bishop  to  be  inconvenient  that 


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220  HENBT  OF  HUKTINGDON.  [BOOK  71. 

his  episcopal  seat  should  he  placed  at  the  veiy  extremity  of 
his  diocese.  It  was  also  unsatisfactory  to  him  that  it  was 
fixed  in  a  poor  town,  while  there  was  in  the  diocese  so 
nohle  a  city  as  Lincoln,  which  seemed  more  worthy  to  be 
the  episcopal  seat.  He  therefore  bought  some  fields  on 
the  top  of  the  hill,  near  the  castie,  the  lofty  towers  of 
which  commanded  the  city ;  and  on  that  elevated  spot  he 
built  a  cathedral  church,  which  for  strength  and  beauty 
was  both  fitting  for  the  service  of  God,  and,  as  the  times 
required,  impregnable  to  hostile  attacks.  The  district  of 
Lindsey,  in  which  it  was  placed,  had  from  ancient  times 
been  claimed  as  part  of  the  archbishopric  of  York.  But 
Remi,  disregarding  the  archbishop's  remonstrances,  urged 
forward  the  work  he  had  undertaken,  and  when  it  was  com- 
pleted he  suppUed  it  with  clerks  of  approved  learning  and 
morals.  Remi  was  small  in  stature,  but  great  in  heart ; 
his  complexion  was  dark,  but  his  conduct  was  clear.  He 
was,  indeed,  on  one  occasion  accused  of  treason  against  the 
king,  but  one  of  his  followers  cleared  him  of  the  charge  by 
the  ordeal  of  red-hot  iron,  and  thus  restored  him  to  the 
royal  favour  unsullied  by  any  stain  of  disgrace.  By  this 
founder,  at  this  time,  and  for  these  reasons,  the  modem 
cathedral  of  the  diocese  of  Lincoln  was  begun. 

And  now  the  course  of  events  being  brought  down  to  my 
own  times,  it  is  fitting  that  I  shoilld  commence  a  new  Book 
with  those  that  followed.  If  any  recapitulation  be  required, 
according  to  my  practice  hitherto,  for  the  more  clear  imder- 
standing  of  what  has  been  set  forth  in  this  present  Book, 
it  may  be  so  short  as  not  to  detain  the  reader.  Here,  then, 
follows  a  summary  view  of  the  kings'  reigns  included  in  the 
Book  now  brought  to  an  end. 

Ethelbed  reigned  xxxvii.  years,  in  continual  disturbance, 
over  the  whole  extent  of  England. 

Edmund,  the  young  and  the  brave,  was  treacherously 
murdered,  after  a  reign  of  one  year. 

Canute  the  Great  reigned  xx.  years,  with  more  glory  than 
any  of  his  predecessors. 

Harold,  his  son,  reigned  iv.  years  and  xvi.  weeks. 

Habdecanute,  the  munificent  son  of  King  Canute,  was 
cut  off  by  sudden  death,  after  a  reign  of  six  months  short 
of  ii.  years. 


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A.D.  1087.]  SUCCESSION  OF  KINGS.  221 

Edward,  a  pious  king,  reigned  in  peace  xxiv.  years. 

ELuioLD,  the  perjured,  reigned  scarcely  one  year,  falling 
a  sacrifice  to  his  breach  of  fiEuth. 

William,  the  last  and  the  greatest  of  all  that  have  been 
enumerated,  had  a  glorious  reign  of  xxi.  years.  It  has  been 
said  of  him: — 

"  What  though,  like  Oaesar,  nature  fiul'd 
To  give  thy  brow  its  fairest  grace  1 
Thy  bright  career  a  comet  hail'd. 
And  with  its  lustre  wreath'd  thy  fiftee.'' 


■f 


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222  HKNBT  OF  HUKTINODON.  [BOOK  TfZ. 


BOOK  vn. 

Thus  far  I  have  treated  of  matters  which  I  have  either 
found  recorded  by  old  writers,  or  have  gathered  from  com- 
mon report ;  but  now  I  have  to  deal  wi&  events  which  have 
passed  under  my  own  observation,  or  which  have  been  told 
me  by  eye-witnesses  of  them.  I  have  to  relate  how  the 
Almighty  alienated  both  favom:  and  rank  from  the  Eng- 
lish nation  as  it  deserved,  and  caused  it  to  cease  to  be  a 
people.  It  will  also  appear  how  He  began  to  afllict  the 
Normans  themselves,  the  instruments  of  his  will,  with 
various  calamities. 

The  greater  nobles,  breaking  their  oaths  of  allegiance  to 
William  the  younger,  stirred  up  war  against  him  for  the 
purpose  of  placing  his  brother  Kobert  on  the  throne,  and 
each  of  them  revelled  in  rebellion  and  tumults  within 
his  own  domains  [a.d.  1088].  Odo,  bishop  of  Bayeux,  the 
chief  governor  of  England,  who  was  their  leader,  raised  an 
insurrection  in  Kent  ^,  where  he  seized  and  burnt  the  vills 
of  the  king  and  the  archbishop.  Koger,  earl  of  Morton,  in 
like  manner,  ravaged  the  country  about  Pevensey.  Geoffry, 
the  bishop  [of  Coutances],  set  forth  from  Bristol  and 
pillaged  Bath  and  Berkeley,  and  the  neighbourhood.  Koger, 
[earl  of  Montgomery,]  was  not  slow  in  beginning  the  work 
of  mischief  throughout  East-Anglia  from  his  castle  at 
Norwich.  Hugh  [de  Grantmesnil]  was  not  backward  in 
the  counties  of  Leicester  and  Northampton.  William, 
bishop  of  Durham,  made  a  similar  movement  on  the  bor- 
ders of  Scotland.  The  chief  men  also  of  Herefordshire  and 
Shropshire,  with  the  Welshmen,  burnt  and  pillaged  the 
coimty  of  Worcester  up  to  the  city  gates.  They  were  pre- 
paring to  assault  the  cathedral  and  castle,  when  Wulstan, 
the  venerable  bishop,  in  his  deep  necessity,  implored  the 
aid  of  his  greatest  friend,  even  God  the  Most  High ;  by 

'  The  king  had  granted  him  the  earldom  of  Kent 


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A.D.  1088.]  Wn.T.TAM  II.  S^ 

whose  help,  while  the  bishop  lay  prostrate  in  prayer  before 
the  altar,  a  small  party  of  soldiers  who  salUed  forth  against 
the  enemy,  was  able  either  to  slay  or  capture  5000^  of 
them,  and  the  rest  miraculously  took  to  flight. 

The  king,  therefore,  summoned  an  assembly  of  his  Eng- 
lish subjects  and  promised  that  he  would  restore  the  free- 
>dom  of  chace  and  of  the  woods,  and  that  he  would  conflrm. 
the  ancient  laws  they  loved.  He  then  sat  down  before 
Tunbridge  Castle,  where  Oilbert  was  in  rebellion  against 
hiTYi ;  but  upon  being  reduced  to  straits  by  the  royal  army, 
he  made  peace  with  the  king.  Marching  thence,  the  Mng 
laid  siege  to  Pevensey  Castle,  in  which  were  Bishop  Odo  and 
Earl  Koger,  and  invested  it  six  weeks.  Meanwhile  Kobert, 
duke  of  Normandy,  hastened  to  embark  for  England  and 
take  advantage  of  the  movement  in  his  favour ;  he  therefore 
sent  forward  a  body  of  troops  to  support  his  friends,  pre- 
paring himself  to  follow  with  a  powerful  army.  But  the 
English,  who  guarded  the  sea,  attacked  the  advanced  force, 
and  immense  numbers  of  them  were  either  put  t<o  sword  or 
drowned.  Whereupon  those  who  were  besieged  in  Pevensey 
Castle,  provisions  failing  them,  surrendered  it  to  the  king. 
Bishop  Odo  solemnly  swore  to  depart  the  realm  and  deliver 
up  his  castle  at  Eochester.  But  when  he  came  there  with 
a  party  of  the  king's  troops  to  cause  it  to  be  surrendered. 
Earl  Eustace  and  the  other  great  men  who  were  in  the  city 
seized  the  king's  officers,  at  the  bishop's  secret  instigation, 
and  threw  them  into  prison.  Upon  hearing  this  the  king 
laid  siege  to  Eochester,  which  shortly  capitulated,  and  Bishop 
Odo  went  beyond  sea  never  to  return.  The  king  also  sent 
an  army  to  Durham  and  besieged  the  city :  upon  its  sur- 
render the  bishop  and  many  of  the  rebels  were  driven  into 
banishment.  The  king  distributed  the  lands  of  those  who 
broke  their  fealty  Among  such  as  continued  faithful  to 
him. 

The  year  following  [a.d.  1089],  Archbishop  Lanfranc,  the 
enlightened  doctor  erf  the  church  and  the  kind  father  of  the 
monks,  departed  this  life ;  and  there  was  a  great  earthquake 
the  same  year.  William  the  younger,  preparing  the  means 
of  taking  vengeance  on  his  brother  for  the  injury  he  had 

'  The  Saxon  Chronicle  says  five  hundred. 


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224  HENRY   OF  HUNTINGDON.  TflOOK  TU. 

done  him,  in  the  third  year  of  his  reign  obtained  possession 
by  bribes  of  the  castles  of  St.  Vallery  and  Albermarle,  from 
whence  the  knights  he  placed  in  garrison  began  to  plunder 
and  bum  his  brother's  territory.  Following  them  himself 
the  next  year,  he  came  to  terms  with  his  brother,  and  it  was 
agreed  that  the  castles  which  the  king  held  in  despite  of  his 
brother  should  still  be  his.  The  kmg  also  engaged  to  aid 
him  in  the  recovery  of  all  the  places  his  father  possessed 
beyond  sea.  And  it  was  agreed  between  them  that  if  either 
of  them  died  without  a  son,  the  survivor  should  be  his  heir. 
This  treaty  was  guaranteed  by  the  oaths  of  twelve  chief  men 
on  the  king's  part,  and  twelve  on  the  duke's. 

Meanwhile,  Msdcolm,  king  of  the  Scots,  made  an  irrup 
tion  into  England  for  the  purpose  of  plunder,  and  did 
grievous  injury;  whereupon  the  king  having  returned  to 
England,  accompanied  by  his  brother,  they  marched  an 
army  against  the  Scots.  Upon  this  Malcohn  was  greatly 
alarmed,  and  did  homage  to  the  king,  taking  the  oath  of 
fealty  to  him.  Duke  Kobert  remained  some  time  with  his 
brother,  but  finding  that  he  was  insincere  in  his  professions 
of  amity,  he  crossed  over  to  his  own  States.  The  year  fol- 
lowing, the  king  rebuilt  Carlisle,  and  peopled  it  with  in- 
habitants drawn  fi:om  the  south  of  England.  Bishop  Kemi 
also  sickened  and  died  just  as  he  had  completed  the  church 
at  Lincoln,  and  was  about  to  consecrate  it 

[a.d.  1093.]  William,  the  younger,  fell  sick  at  Gloucester 
dining  Lent,  in  the  sixth  year  of  his  reign.  He  then  gave 
the  archbishopric  of  Canterbuiy  to  Anselm  the  abbot  [of 
Bee],  a  holy  man,  and  the  bishopric  of  Lincoln  to  his  chan- 
cellor, Robert  Bloet  *,  who  excelled  other  men  in  grace  of 
person,  in  serenity  of  temper,  and  in  courtesy  of  speech. 
The  khig  also  promised  at  this  time  to  amend  bad  laws,  and 
protect  the  Lord's  household  in  peace ;  but  as  soon  as  he 
got  well  he  repented  of  his  promises,  and  acted  worse  than 
before.  Regretting  that  he  had  not  sold  the  bishopric  of 
Lincoln,  when  the  Archbishop  of  York  preferred  his  claims 
against  Bishop  Robert  for  the  city  of  Lincoln  and  the  dis- 
trict of  Lindsey,  as  appertaining  to  his  archiepiscopal  see, 

1  Henry  of  Hnntingdon  was  brought  up  from  childhood  in  the  family  of 
thia  bishop. 


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A.D.  1093-5.]      AFFAIBS  IN  SCOTIJ^IO)  AND  NORMANDY.  226 

the  cause  was  not  decided  until  Kobert  became  bound  to 
the  king  for  5000Z.  to  secure  the  liberties  of  his  church. 
The  guilt  of  simony  lay  on  the  king  and  not  on  the  bishop. 
The  same  year  Malcolm,  king  of  the  Scots,  making  a  pre- 
datory inroad  into  England,  was  intercepted  imawares  and 
slain,  together  with  his  son  Edward,  who  would  have  in- 
herited his  crown.  When  Queen  Margaret  received  these 
tidings,  her  heart  was  troubled  even  imto  death  at  her 
double  loss;  and  going  to  the  church  she  confessed  and 
commimicated,  and  commending  herself  in  prayer  to  God 
gave  up  the  ghost.  The  Scots  elected  Duvenal,  Malcolm's 
brother,  king;  but  Duncan,  the  late  king's  son,  who  was 
residing  as  a  hostage  in  the  court  of  King  William,  by  the 
help  of  that  king  drove  out  Duneval  and  was  received  as 
king :  the  following  year  the  Scots,  at  the  instigation  of 
Duneval,  treacherously  put  Duncan  to  death. 

William  the  younger,  in  the  seventh  year  of  his  reign, 
being  provoked  that  his  brother  had  not  observed  his  oath, 
passed  over  into  Normandy.  When  the  brothers  met  the 
jurators  wha  had  sworn  to  the  observance  of  the  treaty,  laid 
all  the  blame  on  the  king ;  disregarding  this  he  departed  in 
a  rage,  and  attacked  the  castle  of  Bures,  which  he  took.  On 
the  other  hand,  the  duke  took  the  castle  of  Argences,  in 
which  was  an  earl  of  the  king's  named  Koger  of  Poitou,  with 
700  soldiers ;  and  he  afterwards  took  the  castle  of  Hulme. 
Meanwhile,  the  king  levied  20,000  foot  soldiers  in  England 
to  be  transported  to  Normandy,  but  when  they  arrived  at 
the  sea-coast  he  took  from  them  the  allowance  they  had 
received,  which  was  ten  shillings  per  man,  and  disbanded 
them .  Meanwhile,  Duke  Kobert,  joined  by  the  King  of  France 
and  a  large  force,  was  proceeding  to  lay  siege  to  Eu,  where 
King  WiQiam  lay.  However,  the  intrigues  and  the  bribes 
of  King  William  induced  the  King  of  France  to  abandon  the 
enterprise,  and  thus  the  whole  army  dispersed  in  a  cloud  of 
darkness,  which  money  had  raised.  King  William  had  sent 
for  his  brother  Henry,  who  was  at  Damfront,  to  meet  him 
in  England  by  Christmas ;  whereupon  he  came  to  London. 
The  king  spent  Christmas  day  at  Whitsand,  from  whence 
he  sailed  to  Dover. 

The  beginning  of  the  next  year  [a.d.  1095],  he  sent  his 
brother  [Henry]  over  to  Normandy  with  a  large  sum  of 

Q 


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JKW  HENBt  OF  HUNTINGDOir.  [BOOK  Til. 

money  to  be  employed  in  continual  inroads  on  the  king's 
behalf.  Robert,  earl  of  Northmnberiand,  elated  at  having 
defeated  the  King  of  the  Scots,  refused  to  attend  the  king's 
court;  whereupon  the  king  marched  an  army  into  Nor- 
thumberland, and  took  prisoners  all  the  earl's  principal 
adherents  in  a  fortress  called  New  Castle.  He  then  re- 
duced the  castle  of  Tynemouth,  in  which  was  the  earFs 
brother.  Afterwards  he  besieged  the  carl  himself  in  Bam- 
borongh  Castle,  which  being  impregnable  by  assatdt,  he 
built  a  castle  against  it  which  he  called  Malveisin\  in  which 
he  left  part  of  his  army,  and  retired  with  the  rest.  But  one 
night  the  earl  escaped,  and  though  pursued  by  the  king's 
troops,  got  into  Tynemouth.  There,  ^ideavouring  to  de- 
fend himself,  he  was  wounded  and  taken,  and  being 
brought  to  Windsor,  was  there  kept  a  prisoner.  The  castle 
of  Bamborough  was  surrend^ed  to  the  king,  and  those  who 
had  joined  the  eaii  were  severely  treated;  for  William 
d'Eu  had  his  eyes  put  out,  and  Odo,  earl  of  Champagne, 
with  many  others,  was  deprived  of  his  lands. 

The  same  year,  the  indefatigable  king  led  his  army  into 
Wales,  because  the  Welsh  had  slain  numbers  of  the  French 
the  yefflr  before,  and  stormed  the  castles  of  the  nobles,  and 
carried  fire  and  sword  along  the  borders.  The  present 
year  also  they  had  taken  Montgomery  Castle,  and  put  all 
who  were  in  it  to  the  sword.  The  king  oveiran  the  bor- 
ders of  Wales,  but  as  he  could  not  penetrate  into  the  fast- 
nesses of  the  mountains  and  woods,  he  retired,  having 
accomplished  little  or  nothing.  About  this  time  falling 
stars  were  seen  in  the  heavens  in  such  numbers  that  they 
could  not  be  coimted. 

In  the  year  1096  began  the  great  movement  towards 
Jerusalem  on  the   preaching  of   Pope  Urban*.     Bobert, 

^  "  The  bad  neighbour." 

'  The  notice  of  this  Orusade  in  the  Saxon  Chronicle  is  confined  to  a  veiy 
brief  reference  to  "Eari  Robert's**  departure  for  it  a.d.  1096.  William  df 
Malmsbury's  accomt  »  more  circumstantial  than  Henry  of  Hunting- 
doB*s,  but  it  does  not  appear  that  our  historian  made  use  of  it  From  what- 
ever sources  Henry  of  Huntingdon  derived  his  information,  this  episode, 
which  contains  a  rapid  sketch  of  the  progress  of  the  Crasaders  from  Con- 
stantinople to  Jerusalem,  keeping  in  especial  view  the  achievements  of  the 
Anglo-Norman  prince  Eobert,  appears  to  be  an  original  composition.  It  was 
written  within  about  60  yean  after  the  events  it  relatesw     Henry  of  Hun- 


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A.D.  1096-7.]  THE   SECOND   CRUSADE.  S2T 

duke  of  Normandy,  joining  it,  gave  Normandy  in  pledge  to 
his  brother  William.  There  went  with  him  Kobert,  duke 
[earl]  of  Flanders,  and  Eustace,  count  of  Boulogne.  From 
another  quarter  went  also  Duke  Godfrey '  and  Baldwin, 
count  de  Mont,  together  with  another  Baldwin,  both  of 
whom  were  aftCTwards  kings  of  Jerusalem.  From  a  third 
quarter  went  Eaymond,  count  of  Thoulouse,  and  the  Bi- 
shop of  Puy.  Who  would  omit  Hugh  the  Great,  brother  of 
the  King  of  France,  and  Stephen,  coimt  de  Blois?  Who 
would  not  remember  Bohemond^  and  his  nephew,  Tancred  ? 
It  was  the  Lord's  doing,  a  wonder  unknown  to  preceding 
ages  and  reserved  for  our  days,  that  such  different  nations, 
so  many  noble  warriors,  should  leave  their  splendid  pos- 
sessions, their  wives  and  children,  and  that  all  with  one 
accord  should,  in  contempt  of  death,  direct  their  steps  to 
regions  almost  unknown.  The  vastness  of  the  movement 
must  be  my  apology  to  the  reader  for  a  digression  from  the 
regular  course  of  this  History ;  for  if  I  were  willing  to  be 
silent  concerning  this  wonderful  work  of  the  Lord,  my  sub- 
ject would  compel  me  to  treat  of  it,  as  it  concerns  Kobert, 
the  duke  of  Normandy. 

[a.d.  1097.]  Alexius  was  emperor  at  Constantinople,, 
when,  with  his  consent,  either  forced  or  voluntary,  all  the 
chiefs  above  named  assembled  there,  and  crossing  over  the 
narrow  arm  of  the  sea,  which  was  anciently  called  the  Hel- 
lespont, but  now  bears  the  name  of  the  Strait  of  St.  George, 
proceeded  to  lay  siege  to  the  city  of  Nice,  the  capital  of 
Komania.  Bobert,  duke  of  Normandy,  sat  down  before 
the  east  gate,  and  near  him  was  the  Earl  of  Flanders. 
Duke  Bohemond  took  post  at  the  north  gate,  and  Tancred 
near  him.  At  the  west  gate  was  posted  Godfrey,  and  next 
to  him  lay  Hugh  the  Great  and  Earl  Stephen.  At  the 
south  was  Eari  Eaymond,  with  the  Bishop  of  Puy.  Lnmense: 
multitudes  were  here  assembled  from  England,  Normandy,. 

tingdon  does  not  notice  the  first  Crusade,  Iiis  subject  not  requiring  him  to  do 
80.  For  the  Crudes  generally,  William  of  Malmsbury  may  be  consulted. 
It  is  scarcely  necessiffy  to  remind  the  reader  that  y«ry  interesting  ac- 
counts of  the  third  Crusade  are  contained  in  a  volume  of  Mr.  Bohn's  "  Aati»> 
quarian  Library/'  entitled  "  Chronicles  of  the  Cmaaders." 

*  Godfrey  of  Bouillon. 

^  Son  of  Bobert  Gniscard,  prince  of  Tarentum, 

Q  3 


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228  HENBT   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  VH 

Brittany,  Aquitaine,  Spain,  Provence,  Flanders,  Denmark, 
Saxony,  Germany,  Italy,  Greece,  and  other  comitries.  The 
light  of  the  Sim  from  the  world's  creation  never  shone  on 
so  splendid  an  array,  so  dread,  so  numerous  an  assem- 
blage, so  many  and  such  valiant  chiefs.  The  siege  of 
Troy  is  not  to  be  named  in  comparison,  nor  the  heroes 
who  caused  the  fall  of  Thebes.  Here  were  to  be  foimd  the 
most  illustrious  men  that  the  western  world  had  given  birth 
to  in  any  age ;  all  bearing  the  sign  of  the  cross,  all  the 
bravest  of  their  several  countries. 

On  Ascension  day,  at  the  sound  of  the  trumpets  in  the 
several  camps,  a  general  assault  was  made  on  the  city. 
Then  shouts  filled  the  air,  the  sky  was  darkened  with 
clouds  of  arrows,  the  earth  shook  witii  the  stamp  of  men, 
the  water  echoed  the  noise ;  the  foot  of  the  wall  is  reached, 
the  sappers  begin  their  work.  The  Infidels  plied  arrows 
and  darts,  logs  and  stones,  fragments  and  masses,  fire  and 
water,  to  no  purpose ;  skill,  and  valoiu*,  and  machine-hurled 
missiles  were  of  no  avail.  And  now  the  powerful  army  of 
the  Saracens  appeared  in  well-ordered  ranks,  with  gleaming 
standards,  on  the  south  of  the  city.  They  were  gallantly 
encoimtered  by  the  troops  of  Count  Eaymond  and  the 
Bishop  of  Puy,  depending  on  the  divine  protection  and 
their  own  bright  arms.  The  Christians  rushed  on  the 
enemy,  who,  struck  with  sudden  fear,  the  Lord  confoimd- 
ing  them,  gave  way.  Great  numbers  of  the  fugitives  were 
slain,  and  missiles  thrown  into  the  city  by  machines  in- 
creased the  alarm  of  the  inhabitants.  Thus,  beyond  mea- 
sure terrified,  they  surrendered  the  city  to  our  army ;  and 
it  was  given  up  to  the  emperor,  according  to  promise.  The 
army  was  detained  before  Nice  seven  weeks  and  three 
days.  Its  course  was  then  directed  to  Antioch;  and  on 
the  third  day's  march  it  was  divided  into  two  bodies ;  at 
the  head  of  one  of  them  were  Kobert,  duke  of  Normandy, 
Bohemond,  Kichard  of  the  Principality,  Tancred,  Everard  de 
Puisat,  Achard  de  Mont  Merloy,  and  several  others.  They 
were  surrounded  by  360,000  Parthians,  who  are  now  called 
Turks,  Persians,  Publicans,  Medes,  Cilicians,  Saracens, 
and  Augulans,  besides  Arabs,  of  whom  there  were  not 
many.  A  messenger  was  dispatched  by  the  chiefs  before- 
named  to  the  other  part  of  the  army,  but  meanwhile  they 


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A.D.  1097.]     BATTLE  WITH  THE  SARACENS.  229 

became  fiercely  engaged  with  the  enemy.  The  Turks, 
Persians,  and  Medes  discharged  arrows ;  the  Cilicians  and 
the  Augulans,  javeUns;  the  Saracens  and  Arabs  used  spears; 
and  the  Publicans,  iron  maces  and  swords,  all  with  deadly 
effect,  so  that  the  Christians  suffered  terribly;  for  their 
horses  became  imsteady  under  the  strange  shouts  of  the 
Saracens,  and  the  braying  of  their  trumpets,  and  the  beat- 
ing of  their  tambours,  and  refused  to  obey  the  spm*.  Our 
men,  also,  amidst  this  confused  din,  hardly  knew  what  it 
meant.  The  Christians,  therefore,  meditated  flight,  and 
some  had  begun  to  turn  their  backs,  when  Kobert,  duke  of 
Normandy,  rode  up  to  them,  shouting,  "  Where,  soldiers, 
where  are  you  fleeing?  The  Turkish  horses  are  swifter 
than  ours ;  flight  will  not  save  you,  it  is  better  to  die  here  : 
if  you  think  as  I  do,  follow  me."  As  he  spoke  he  charged 
the  chief  of  the  Infidels,  and  with  a  single  thrust  of  his 
lance  pierced  through  his  shield  and  armom*,  and  the  next 
moment  struck  down  a  second  and  a  third  of  the  Saracen 
troops.  Then  the  fierce  Tancred,  and  the  valiant  Bohe- 
mond,  and  Kichard  of  the  PrincipaUty,  and  Kobert  de 
Ansa,  one  of  the  bravest  knights,  were  not  slack  in  dealing 
furious  blows.  The  Christians  regained  their  courage,  and 
the  renewed  conflict  was  long  and  desperate.  While  it  was 
yet  raging,  Hugh  the  Great  and  Aiselm  de  Kipemont/ 
came  up  at  the  top  of  their  speed  with  only  twenty  knights  ^ 
from  the  other  division  of  the  army.  Thus  fresh,  they 
charged  and  scattered  the  weary  Infidels ;  for  the  lance  of 
Hugh  was  like  the  lightning's  flash,  the  sword  of  Anselm 
like  the  dividing  flame.  Two  of  our  princes  fell ;  while  the 
Arabs,  with  their  numbers,  filled  the  places  of  their  slain. 
Of  the  two  princes,  William,  Tancred's  brother,  in  the  act 
of  piercing  a  Saracen  chief,  received  a  mortal  wound  from 
his  enemy's  lance;  while  Godfrey  de  Dm'-mont,  as  he 
struck  off  an  Arab's  head,  was  shot  by  a  Persian  arrow 
through  the  body,  which  his  heated  smrcoat  could  no  longer 
protect.  The  Franks  would  have  been  unable  to  make  a 
further  resistance  against  the  dense  masses  with  which 

'  This  seasonable  aid  from  the  advanced  guard  of  Godfrey  of  Bouillon's 
division  is  not  mentioned  by  William  of  Malmesbury,  nor  in  the  fuller  ac- 
count of  this  action  compiled  by  Eoger  de  Wendover. 


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5230  HEIiBT  OF  HUNTmODON.  [BOOK  VH. 

they  were  engaged,  when  suddenly  the  standards  of  the 
other  division  were  seen  advancing  from  a  neighbouring 
wood.  The  battle  had  now  lasted  till  nine  o'clock,  aod 
great  numbers  of  the  first  division  had  fallal,  nor  would 
any  have  escaped  if  the  remainder  of  the  army  had  not 
oome  up.  Never  afterwards  did  the  Infidels  fight  so  despe- 
rately. Godfrey  led  the  van  of  the  relieving  army,  with 
the  two  Baldwins  in  command  on  the  ri^t ;  on  the  left 
were  Eaii  Stephen  and  Osward  de  Nnlsion.  The  division 
of  Baldwin  was  followed  at  some  distance  by  Ooimt  B^iy' 
mond  and  his  people;  that  of  Stephen,  by  Bobert,  the 
valiant  earl  of  Flanders^  with  his  vassals.  A  cloud  o£ 
knights,  and  an  aidless  crowd  of  infantry,  were  in  the  rear 
of  Godfrey's  line ;  while  the  Bishop  of  Pay  showed  himself 
on  a  hill  with  a  resolute  force  of  m^i-at-arms.  The  Infidels 
were  intent  on  the  fight,  when,  seeing  so  large  a  force 
unexpectedly  advan<eing,  they  were  terrified,  as  if  ihe  very 
heavens  were  falling  upon  them,  and  took  to  Eight,  with 
SoHman  their  prince.  This  victory,  which,  though  dearly 
bought,  secured  immense  spoils,  was  gained  on  the  1st  of 
July. 

Pursuing  their  plan  of  marcliing  on  Antioch,  the  Chris- 
tian chiefs  proceeded  by  Heraclea  to  Tarsus,  which  was 
given  up  to  the  noble  Eari  Baldwin.  Adama  and  Mamistra 
were  subjugated  by  the  brave  Tancred.  The  noble  Duke 
of  Normandy  gave  a  city  of  the  Turks  to  Simeon ;  and 
Eaymond,  the  powerful  count,  and  Bohemond,  the  thunder- 
bolt of  war,  bestowed  another  city  on  Peter  de  Alpibus. 
The  Christians  then  advanced  to  Oca,  which  city  they  took ; 
and  Peter  de  Roussillon  took  Eufa  and  several  strongholds. 
At  length  they  laid  siege  to  Antioch,  the  capital  of  Syria, 
on  the  12th  of  the  kalends  of  November  [the  28th  of  Octo- 
ber]. It  having  been  reported  to  Bohemond  that  the 
Tudcs  were  assembled  in  numbers  at  a  castle  called  Areg, 
he  led  an  expedition  against  them,  and  by  the  mercy  of 
God,  though  his  troops  were  few  in  number,  he  defeated 
the  enemy,  bringing  back  many  prisoners,  whose  heads  he 
cut  off  before  the  gates  of  Antioch,  to  strike  terror  among 
the  citizens. 

The  Christians  celebrated  the  festival  of  the  Nativity 
while   they  lay  before  the   besieged  town.     After  which, 


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A.D.  1098.]  SIEGE   OF  ANTIOCH.  231 

Bohemond  and  the  Count  of  Flanders  marched  at  the  head 
of  20,000  men  into  the  country  of  the  Saracens ;  for  they 
had  assembled  numerous  forces  from  Jerusalem,  and  Da 
mascus,  and  Aleppo,  and  other  places,  for  the  relief  of 
Antioch.  Bohemond  attacked  tins  combined  force,  and 
routed  it  with  great  slaughter ;  and  the  chiefs  of  the  expe- 
dition returning  to  the  camp  with  rich  booty  were  received 
with  the  triumph  they  had  merited.  Meanwhile,  those 
who  were  shut  up  within  the  walls  made  vigorous  sallies 
against  the  besieging  army,  in  which  they  killed  the 
standard-bearer  of  the  Bishop  of  Puy,  with  many  others. 
In  the  month  of  February,  the  Infidels  assembled  a  large 
force  at  the  bridge  over  the  FerS  at  the  castle  of  Are&. 
The  Christian  princes,  therefore,  leaving  the  foot  soldiers 
to  maintain  the  siege,  drew  out  the  knights,  and  detached 
them  against  the  enemy  in  six  divisions.  The  first  was  led 
by  the  Duke  of  Normandy;  the  second  by  Godfrey,  the 
German  duke ;  the  third  by  the  noble  Count  Raymond ; 
the  fourth  by  Robert,  tibe  pride  of  Flanders ;  the  fifth  by 
the  most  excellent  Bishop  of  Puy ;  and  the  sixth,  which 
was  the  strongest,  by  Bohemond  and  Tancred.  Battle  was 
joined  with  great  bravery,  the  war-cries  reaching  to  heaven 
and  the  air  being  darkened  with  clouds  of  arrows,  while 
fierce  assaults  were  made  on  both  sides.  There  shortly 
advanced  from  the  rear  a  great  body  of  Parthians,  who 
made  so  sharp  an  onset  on  the  Christian  knights  that  they 
fell  back  a  little.  Then  Bohemond,  the  arbiter  of  war  and 
judge  of  battles,  charged  with  his  division,  hitherto  unen- 
gaged, the  centre  of  the  enemy ;  and  Robert,  son  of  Gerard, 
a  good  knight  and  Bohemond 's  standard  bearer,  dashed 
among  the  Turkish  troops,  as  a  lion  among  lambs,  and  the 
points  of  his  pennon  were  for  ever  fluttering  over  the  heads 
of  the  Turks.  The  rest,  beholding  this,  regained  tlieir 
coinage,  and  simultaneously  bore  down  on  the  enemy. 
Then  the  Duke  of  Normandy  cut  one  man  down  with  a 
blow  from  his  sword,  which  severed  head,  teeth,  neck,  and 
shoulders,  down  to  his  breast.     Duke  Godfrey,  also,  clove 

*  Roger  of  Wendover  Bays,  "over  the  Orontes,  otherwise  called  the  Fer;** 
but  the  bridge  mentioned  in  the  text  is  on  the  Ifrin,  not  on  the  Orontes. — 
See  Oibbon,  xL  p.  62. 


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dSd  HENEY  OF  HIJKTINGDON.  [bOOK  VU 

another  in  two  through  the  middle  of  his  body,  so  tliat 
one  part  fell  to  the  ground,  the  other  was  carried  by  the 
horse  he  rode  through  the  Turkish  troops,  to  the  ten-or  of 
all  who  saw  it ;  and  thus  was  hurried  to  everlasting  punish- 
ment. The  heads  of  many  of  the  slain  were  carried  to 
Antioch  in  triumph.  This  battle  was  fought  in  the  begin- 
ning of  Lent. 

Meanwhile,  many  of  the  tribe  of  the  "Amiralii,"^  coming 
from  Babylon  *,  had  got  into  Antioch.  Now  our  army  had 
built  a  fort  before  the  gate  where  there  is  a  bridge  and  a 
mosque,  and  Kaymond  and  Bohemond  had  gone  to  the 
gate  of  St.  Simeon  for  provisions,  when  the  garrison  of  the 
town  made  a  desperate  sally,  and  killing  many  of  our  men, 
drove  the  rest  before  them  as  far  as  their  camp.  The  day 
following  they  attacked  Raymond  and  Bohemond,  and  put 
to  the  sword  a  thousand  of  their  troops ;  the  chiefs  escaped 
by  a  precipitate  retreat.  The  Franks,  enraged  at  these  two 
defeats,  drew  up  their  forces  in  order  of  batde  on  the  plains 
before  the  city  gates.  The  Infidels  were  not  slow  in  draw- 
ing out  their  troops  to  meet  them.  The  Christians,  raising 
the  battle-cry  of  fiie  cross,  charged  the  enemy  so  furiously 
at  the  very  first  onset  that  they  at  once  gave  way  and  fled 
to  the  city.  But  when  they  reached  the  narrow  bridge, 
nimibers  either  fell  by  the  sword  or  were  drowned  in  tiie 
river ;  for  few  were  able  to  pass  the  bridge,  and  the  stream 
flowed  with  blood.  There  twelve  of  the  Amiralii  were 
killed,  and  the  Lord  gave  his  people  a  great  victory.  The 
day  following,  when  the  citizens  had  buried  the  dead,  oiu* 
soldiers  dug  up  the  corpses,  and  despoiling  them  of  their 
palls,  with  tiie  gold  and  silver  ornaments,  they  hurled  their 
heads  over  the  city  walls. 

And  now  all  the  hopes  and  haughtiness  of  the  citizens 
had  vanished;  for  Tancred,  carefully  guarding  the  fort 
already  mentioned  before  the  city  gate,  cut  off  all  chance 
of  their  obtaining  supplies  of  victuals.  Then  Firouz,  one 
of  the  Amiralii^  of  the  Turkish  nation,  with  whom  Bohe- 

*  Henry  of  Huntingdon  appears  to  have  misinterpreted  the  authority 
from  which  he  obtained  his  information.     See  note  below. 

^  The  Egyptian  Babylon,  built  by  Oambyses. 

'  It  has  been  conjectured  that  the  ''Amiralii"  were  not  a  tribe  or  a 
family ;  but  that  the  Latin  writers  have  thus  travestied  the  Arabian  title -of 


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AJ).  1098.]      THE  CRU8ADEBS  BESIEGED  IN  ANTIOCH.  233 

mond  had  encouraged  an  intimacy,  foreseeing  the  fate  that 
awaited  his  friends,  delivered  to  Bohemond  those  towers 
which  were  in  his  power.  Accordingly,  when  flags  were 
hoisted  on  the  towers,  the  Franks  broke  down  the  gates 
and  burst  into  the  city.  .  Those  of  the  Turks  who  made 
any  resistance  were  slaughtered ;  others  made  their  escape 
from  the  city;  some  got  into  the  upper  hold.  Axianus^, 
the  lord  of  tiie  city,  attempting  to  escape,  was  made 
prisoner  by  the  Arminians,  and  his  head  was  brought  to 
Bohemond.  Antioch  was  taken  on  the  3rd  of  Jime 
[A.D.  1098]. 

Then  Corboran,  commander-in-chief  of  the  army  of  the 
Sultan  of  Persia,  with  the  kings  of  Damascus  and  Jeru- 
salem, assembled  Turks,  Arabs,  Saracens,  Azimites,  Curts, 
Persians,  and  Augulans,  in  numbers  like  the  sand  of  the 
sea,  to  encompass  the  Franks.  So  Antioch  was  again 
besieged.  Corboran  posted  part  of  his  troops  in  the  higher 
fort,  who  kept  our  army  in  alarm  night  and  day.  With  the 
rest  of  his  force  he  blockaded  the  city,  so  that  no  provisions 
could  be  brought  in.  On  the  third  day  the  Christians 
salHed  forth  against  the  enemy,  thinking  that  they  could 
meet  them  fairly  in  the  field ;  but  the  number  and  strength 
of  the  enemy  were  such  that  our  people  were  compelled  to 
retreat  within  the  walls,  not  without  great  loss  from  the 
enemy's  arms,  as  well  as  from  the  crush  at  the  city  gate. 
On  the  morrow,  four  of  the  Christian  leaders,  William  [of 
Grantmesnil]  and  another  WilUam,  and  Alberic  and  Lam- 
bert, made  their  escape  secretly  to  the  sea,  by  the  gate  of 
St.  Simeon,  and  by  their  contrivance  all  the  victualling 
ships  went  with  them.  Meanwhile,  the  Franks  were  so 
galled  by  the  attacks  of  the  garrison  in  the  upper  fort,  that 
Siey  built  a  wall  to  shut  them  in.  Hope  increased  on  the 
side  of  the  Infidels,  and  famine  on  that  of  the  Christians. 
While  they  were  in  expectation  of  the  supplies  promised 
by  the  emperor,  a  hen  was  sold  for  fifteen  shillings,  an  egg 
for  two  shillings,  and  a  nut  for  one  penny.  They  cooked 
and  ate  leaves  of  trees  and  thistles,  and  greedily  devoured 

Amen  or  Emirs.  Soger  of  Wendover  fubstitutes  Emifer  for  Firooz,  as  the 
proper  name  of  this  indiyidnal. 

1  It  is  difficult  to  discover  under  this  Latinized  version  the  Oriental  i 
o^  this  lord  of  Antioch.    It  hai  been  given  ai  Akky-Sian. 


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dS4  HEKBT  OF   HUNTINaDON.  [BOOE  YH. 

tile  softened  hides  of  horses  and  asses.  Moreover,  Stephen, 
count  of  Chartres,  deserting  his  Mends  with  unmanly 
weakness,  met  the  emperor  advancing,  and  induced  hiyp  to 
retire  hy  telling  him  with  tears  that  all  the  Franks  had 
perished.  The  faithful,  therefore,  were  in  the  utmost 
despair,  heing  so  reduced  hy  famine  that  they  could  not 
even  bear  the  wei^it  of  their  armour.  And  now  a  fiery 
light  flawed  from  heaven  over  the  Turkish  army,  and  the 
Lord  i^peared  in  a  vision  to  one  of  his  faithful  servants, 
and  said,  "Carry  this  message  to  the  children  of  the 
"West.  Behold,  I  have  given  the  city  of  Nice  into  your 
hands,  and  have  covered  you  in  all  your  battles  with  the 
Infidels ;  and  I  gave  you  also  the  city  of  Antioch.  But 
when  you  had  taken  triumphant  possession,  you  committed 
fornication  both  with  the  strange  women  and  the  Christians, 
so  that  your  ill  savour  has  ascended  on  high."  Then  the 
man  of  God  fell  at  his  feet,  sa)ring,  "Help,  Lord,  thy 
people  in  their  great  affliction."  And  the  Lord  answered, 
"  I  have  helped  them,  and  will  yet  help  them.  Tell  my 
people,  that  if  they  return  to  me,  I  will  return  to  them ; 
and  within  five  days  I  myself  will  be  their  defender." 
There  also  appeared  a  vision  of  St.  Andrew  the  apostle  to 
a  certain  priest,  revealing  to  him  where  the  spear  which 
pierced  our  Saviour  would  be  found;  the  truth  of  which  the 
priest  confirmed  to  the  people  by  an  oath. 

The  Christians,  then,  jrfter  fiastmg  for  three  days,  and 
solemn  processions,  and  the  celebration  of  masses  and 
giving  of  alms,  with  tears  and  confession  of  their  sins, 
marched  against  the  enemy,  the  Lord  himself  being  their 
leader.  The  first  rank  was  commanded  by  Hugh  the 
Great  and  the  Earl  of  Flanders ;  the  second  by  Duke  God- 
firey  and  Baldwin ;  the  third  by  Kobert,  the  brave  Norman ; 
the  fourth  division,  under  the  command  of  the  Bishop  of 
Puy  and  "William  of  Montpelier,  including  the  foUowers  of 
Count  Kaymond,  was  left  to  guard  the  city ;  the  fifth  was 
under  Tancred  and  Count  Richard ;  the  sixth  was  imder 
Bohemond  and  the  Count  de  Eoussillon ;  the  seventh,  dedi- 
cated to  the  honour  of  the  Holy  Spirit,  was  under  the 
command  of  Reginald.  Meanwhile,  the  bishops  and  priests, 
and  clerks  and  monks,  in  their  sacred  vestments,  were  to 
be  seen  on  the  battlements  chanting  litanies  to  God ;  and 


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▲.D.  1008.]  THB  8ABACENS  DEFEAISD.  2S5 

thei«  appeared  to  them  a  heavenly  host,  mounted  on  white 
horses,  and  with  flaming  arms,  their  leaders  being  St. 
George,  St  Mercurius,  and  St  Demetrius.  Corboran  drew 
ont  his  countless  armj,  exulting  in  antieipated  triumph ; 
he  also  caused  large  quantities  of  straw  to  be  set  on  fire 
upon  an  opposite  hill,  that  the  dense  smoke  might  blind 
the  Christian  troops ;  but  the  Lord,  who  rules  the  dements, 
made  the  wind  to  change,  so  that  the  Infidels  were  suffo- 
cated with  the  smoke,  and  took  to  flight.  The  Christians 
pursued  them  with  great  slaughter,  and  the  booty  was 
greater  than  any  taken  in  these  wars.  Upon  seeing  this, 
the  Amiralian  ^  who  had  the  custody  of  the  higher  fort  sur- 
rendered it,  and  became  a  Christian.  This,  victory  the 
Lord  wrought  on  the  feast  of  St.  Peter  and  St.  Paul,  and 
his  name  only  was  exalted  on  that  day.  The  Christians, 
rejoicing,  remained  in  this  country  until  the  kalends  [the 
let]  of  November. 

Meanwhile,  one  of  the  chiefs  named  Eaymond  Pilet, 
placing  himself  at  the  head  of  some  troops,  took  a  castle 
called  Thalamania.  From  thence  he  marched  to  a  town 
named  Marra,  which  was  full  of  Saracens  who  came  &om 
Alef.  The  lofidels  attacked  him,  and  at  first  were  obliged 
to  give  way,  but,  rallying,  the  Franks  were  at  length  de- 
feated with  great  loss.  In  the  month  of  November  ^  all 
the  Christian  princes  collected  their  forces  to  march  to 
Jerusalem.  The  fourth  day  before  the  beginning  of 
October^  they  reached  Marra,  and  having  constructed  a 
wooden  tower  on  four  wheels,  with  other  devices,  they  took 
the  place  by  assault  on  Hhe  11th  of  December.  They 
halted  there  over  Christmas,  being  detained  a  month  and 
four  days,  and  their  march  to  Jerusalem  was  interrupted 
by  the  disputes  which  arose  between  Bohemond  and  Eay- 
mond for  the  possession  of  Antioch.  This  delay  occasioned 
so  great  a  scarcity  of  provisions  that  the  Christians  were 
compelled  to  cook  and  eat  portions  of  the  dead  bodies  of 
the  Infidels.    Departing  on  the  14th  of  January,  they  took 

1  The  EmirY     Bee  note  S,  p.  282. 

*  Roger  de  Weodorer  says  "  September,"  both  in  regard  to  this  and  the 
preceding  paragraph.  It  would  appear  from  the  sabsequent  dates  that  Henry 
of  Huntingdon  is  here  correct;  but  for  October  we  must  read  Decem- 
ber, in  the  next  senteoee. 


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236  HENBT   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  VU. 

two  towns,  full  of  all  necessaries ;  they  then  took  Zaphtdla, 
and  next  a  rich  town  in  the  valley  of  Desem.  In  the  middle 
of  February  they  sat  down  before  the  castle  of  Archis,  the 
siege  of  which  detained  them  three  months,  and  there  they 
celebrated  the  feast  of  Easter ;  and  there,  also,  Anselm  de 
Kipemont,  a  brave  knight,  was  killed  by  the  hurling  of  a 
stone,  as  were  also  William  of  Picardy,  and  many  others. 
The  King  of  Camela  made  his  peace  with  the  invading 
army.  Meanwhile,  part  of  it  took  Tortosa  and  Maraclea ; 
but  the  Emir  of  Gibel  came  to  terms.  They  then  appeared 
before  Tripolis,  and  slaughtered  so  many  of  the  citizens 
that  all  the  waters  of  the  city  and  the  very  cisterns  were 
red  with  blood.  Upon  this  the  Prince  of  Tripoh  gave 
15,000  bezants  and  15  valuable  horses,  releasing  also  300 
foreign  pilgrims,  to  induce  the  Franks  to  spare  Tripoli, 
and  Archis  which  also  belonged  to  him ;  they  therefore 
passed  through  his  territories  by  the  castle  of  Bethelon, 
and  arrived  on  Ascension  day  at  a  town  on  the  sea-coast 
called  Beyrout.  From  thence  they  marched  to  Sidon, 
thence  to  Tyre,  thence  to  Acre,  thence  to  Caiaphas,  and 
reached  Csesarea  at  Whitsuntide.  From  thence  they 
marched  to  the  town  of  St.  George  \  and  thence  to  Jeru- 
salem, to  which  they  laid  siege  on  the  8th  of  the  ides  of 
June  [6th  of  June,  1099].  The  Duke  of  Normandy  took 
post  on  the  north,  Count  Kobert  on  the  east,  Duke  God- 
frey and  Tancred  on  the  west,  and  Count  Eaymond  on  the 
south,  on  Mount  Sion.  After  many  assaults,  the  besiegers 
constructed  a  very  lofty  tower  of  wood;  but  the  Infidels 
having  built  against  it  stone  forts,  our  people  took  down 
the  wooden  tower,  and  rebuilt  it  on  another  side  of  the  city 
which  was  less  defended.  From  thence  they  made  their 
last  assault,  and,  mounting  the  walls  with  scaling-ladders, 
they  stormed  the  city.  Many  of  the  Infidels  were  slain  in 
the  court  of  the  Temple.  Then  the  faithful  servants  of  the 
Lord  purified  the  holy  city  from  the  abominations  of  the 
tmbelieving  people,  and  Duke  Godfrey  of  Bouillon  was 
created  king  of  Jerusalem.  He  was  succeeded  by  Baldwin, 
liis  valiant  brother;    and,  after  him,  Baldwin  II.,  their 

'  Bamola,  where  there  was  a  famous  church  dedicated  to  this  saint 


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.A.D.  1097-8.]  WILLIAM  n.  IN  NORMANDY.  287 

nephew,  was  chosen  king.  Geoffrey \  diike  of  Anjou,  was 
the  next  king  of  Jerusalem,  and  his  son  Geoffrey  succeeded 
him.  They  were  engaged  in  numerous  and  terrible  wars, 
and  reduced  much  territory  to  subjection  to  the  Christians, 
with  all  the  neighbouring  towns,  except  Ascalon,  which  still 
persists  in  its  impiety^. 

[a.d.  1097.]  William  the  yoimger,  in  the  ninth  year  of 
his  reign  ^,  was  in  Normandy,  which  had  been  left  in  pledge 
to  him  by  his  brother  Robert,  on  his  going  to  Jerusalem. 
Having  disposed  of  all  affairs  there  at  his  own  will,  he 
returned  to  England  on  the  eve  of  Easter,  landing  at 
Arundel.  He  kept  the  feast  of  Whitsuntide,  wearing  his 
crown,  at  Windsor;  afterwards  he  undertook  an  expedition 
into  Wales,  with  a  large  army,  in  which  hd  often  routed  the 
enemy's  forces,  but  as  often  lost  many  of  his  own  in  the 
mountain  passes.  Finding,  therefore,  that  the  Welsh  were 
better  defended  by  the  nature  of  the  country  than  by  their 
prowess  in  arms,  he  ordered  castles  to  be  built  on  the 
borders,  and  returned  into  England.  Archbishop  Anselm 
now  went  abroad,  because  Sie  perverse  king  suffered 
nothing  right  to  be  done  in  England.  The  country  was 
heavily  burthened  by  taxes  without  end  for  building  the  wall 
roimd  the  Tower  of  London  and  for  the  works  of  the  royal 
palace  at  Westminster,  besides  the  rapacity  which  the  king's 
household  exercised  in  the  royal  progresses,  like  an  invad- 
ing army.  At  the  feast  of  St.  Martin  the  king  crossed  over 
to  Normandy,  having  first  dispatched  Edgar  the  Etheling 
with  an  army  into  Scotland,  where  he  defeated  the  king, 
Duvenal,  in  a  great  battle,  and  estabhshed  his  kinsman 
Edgar,  the  son  of  King  Malcolm,  on  the  throne.  A  comet 
appeared  this  year. 

[a.d.  1098.]  William  the  younger  spent  the  eleventh  year 
of  his  reign  in  Normandy,  continually  occupied  by  rebellions 
and  hostile  encountei-s.  Meanwhile,  his  English  subjects 
were  oppressed  and  groxmd  down  by  the  most  infamous 

*  Fulk,  not  Geoflfrey,  earl  of  Anjou.  See  note  afterwards  under  the 
year  1128. 

*  This  was  the  state  of  affairs  in  Palestine  at  the  time  Henry  of  Hun- 
tingdon wrote,  a  few  years  before  the  third  Crusade,  in  which  Richard  Coeur 
de  Lion  bore  so  distinguished  a  part. 

^  Henry  of  Huntingdon  now  returns  to  the  series  of  English  history, 
which  he  had  interrupted  to  introduce  an  account  of  the  second  Crusade. 


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268  HEHBT  OF  HUNTIKGDOK.  [BOOK  YH. 

taxes  and  exactions.  In  the  summer,  blood  was  seen  to 
borst  forth  from  a  spring  «t  Fincbamstead,  in  Berkshire ; 
and  aJfter  that  the  heaivens  seemed  to  be  on  fire  for  almost 
the  whole  of  a  m^.  The  same  year  died  Walkehn, 
bishop  of  Windiester,  and  Hugh,  e«i  of  Shropshire^,  was 
killed  by  the  Irish '.  His  brother,  Robert  de  Belesme, 
succeeded  him. 

William  the  younger  came  orer  to  England  in  the  twelfth 
year  of  his  reign,  and  kept  court  for  the  first  time  in  the 
new  palace  at  Westminster.  Upon  his  entering  the  hall  to 
inspect  it,  some  of  his  attendants  observed  that  it  was  large 
enough,  others  that  it  was  much  larger  ihaut  was  necessary; 
to  which  ihe  king  replied,  that  it  was  not  half  large  enough^; 
a  speech  fitting  a  great  king,  thou^  it  was  little  to  his 
credit.  Soon  afterwards,  news  was  brou^t  to  him,  while 
himting  in  the  New  Forest,  that  his  fiunily  were  besieged 
in  Maine.  He  instantly  rode  to  the  coast,  and  took  ship, 
whereupon  the  sailors  said  to  him,  "  Wherefore^  great 
king,  wiU  you  hare  us  put  to  sea  in  this  riolent  storm  ? 
Have  you  no  fear  of  perishing  in  the  waves?"  To  which 
the  king  repHed,  "I  never  yet  heard  of  a  king  who  was 
drowned."  He  had  a  safe  p£isss^e,  and  on  his  landing 
gained  more  honour  and  glory  than  be  had  done  before  in 
all  his  life ;  for  he  marched  into  Maine,  and  drove  out  the 
Eaii  Elias,  and  reduced  the  whole  province  to  subjection ; 
after  which  he  returned  to  England.  That  year  ihe  king 
gave  the  bi^opric  of  Durham  to  Ranulf,  his  pleader*,  or, 

1  Tbe  title  was  ftfterwaid*  Earl  of  ShicwalMay. 

^  The  Saxon  Chronicle  says  "  by  foreign  grates  in  Anglesey;"  Florence  of 
Worcester,  "  by  the  king  of  Norway  and  his  men.** 

3  Other  chroniclers  report  the  king  to  have  added  that  *'  it  would  only  be 
a  bed-room  in  proportion  to  the  palace  which  he  intended  to  build.*' 

*  The  Saxon  Chronicle  calk  htm  the  king's  chapkin,  who  held  his  eonrtf 
(gemot)  over  all  Engknd.  The  administration  of  the  law  was  now  and  for  a 
long  period  in  the  hands  of  ecclesiastics.  One  of  the  bishops  was  generally 
the  king's  chancellor  or  justiciary.  This  Banulf  appears  to  have  b^n  a  sort 
of  judge  in  eyre  or  of  circuit,  and  a  very  corrupt  one.  Ingram  qnotes  a 
curious  notice  of  him  from  the  Chronicle  of  Peterborough,  published  by 
Sparke,  typis  Bowyer,  1723,  which  informs  m  that  he  wrote  a  book  (now 
lost),  "on  THE  LAWS  OP  EKffLAND."  Ingram  says,  "He  may  therefore 
be  safely  called  the  father  of  English  kwyers,  or  at  kast  law-writers.  It 
was  probably  the  foundation  of  the  later  works  of  BractoBy  Fleta,  Fortescue, 
and  others." 


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A.D.  1100.]  WILLIAM  II.   SLAIN.  239 

rather,  bis  perverter  of  justice,  the  instrument  of  his  exaiC- 
tions,  which  exhausted  all  England.  This  year  also  died 
Osmond,  bishop  of  Salisbury. 

In  the  year  of  our  Lord  1100,  in  the  thirteenth  year  of  his 
reign,  King  WilUam*s  cruel  life  was  brought  to  an  end  by 
an  imhappy  death.  For  after  holding  his  court  in  great 
splendour,  according  to  the  custom  of  his  predecessors,  at 
Gloucester  during  Christmas,  at  Winchester  dining  Easter, 
and  during  Whitsuntide  at  London,  he  went  to  hunt  in 
the  New  Forest  on  the  morrow  of  the  kalends  [ihe  2nd]  of 
August  While  he  was  hunting,  Walter  Tyrrel  uninten- 
tionally shot  the  king  with  an  arrow  aimed  at  a  stag.  The 
king,  who  was  pierced  through  the  heart,  fell  dead  without 
uttering  a  word.  A  short  time  before,  blood  had  been  seen 
to  spring  from  the  ground  in  Berkshire.  The  king  was 
rightly  cut  off  in  the  midst  of  his  injustice.  For  he  was 
savage  beyond  all  men ;  and  by  the  advice  of  evil  counsel- 
lors, and  such  he  always  chose,  he  was  false  to  his  subjects, 
and  worse  to  himself;  he  ruined  his  neighbours  by  extor- 
tions', and  his  own  people  by  continual  levies  for  his 
armies,  and  endless  fines  and  exaeticms.  England  could 
not  breathe  under  the  burdens  laid  upon  it.  For  the  king's 
•  minions  seized  on  and  subverted  everjrthing ;  so  that  they 
even  committed  the  most  violent  adulteries  wrdi  impunity. 
Whatever  wickedness  existed  before  was  now  brought  to 
the  highest  pitch;  whatever  had  no  existence  before  sprung 
up  in  these  times.  The  impious  king,  hateful  alike  to  God 
and  liie  people,  on  the  day  that  he  died  held  in  his  own 
hands  the  archbishopric  of  Canterbray  and  the  bishoprics 
of  Winchester  and  Salisbury,  besides  eleven  abbeys,  which 
were  farmed  out.  In  short,  whatever  was  pleasing  to  God 
was  displeasing  to  this  king  and  his  minions ;  nor  did  he 

'  "  Werra ; "  the  Anglo-Saxon,  Were-gelt ;  Capitis  estimatio,  Dvfresne, 
the  fine  or  penalty  paid  for  homicide,  &c.,  which,  by  the  old  Anglo-Saxon 
laws  was  defined  in  a  gradnated  scale  according  to  the  rank  of  the  party 
concerned.  Henry  of  Hnntibigdon  seems  in  thw  and  other  instances  to  apply 
the  word  "  werra  "  to  the  fines  or  "  reliefs  "  payaWe  to  the  king  on  the  re- 
newal of  their  homage  by  those  holding  nnder  him,  and  on  other  accidents 
of  the  fendal  tenure;  but  I  cannot  find  any  authority  for  such  a  use  of  the 
L  word  werra  in  Dufresne  or  the  other  Glossaries.  It  need  hardly  be  remarked, 
that  all  these  dues  were,  by  the  tyranny  of  the  Nonnaa  kings,  made  an 
iuatmment  of  arbitrary  exactions. 


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240  HENRY   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  VU. 

practise  his  infamous  debauchery  in  secret,  but  openly  in 
the  light  of  day.  He  was  buried  on  the  morrow  at  Win- 
chester, and  Henry,  his  brother,  was  there  chosen  king; 
and  he  bestowed  the  bishopric  of  Winchester  on  William 
Giffard.  Then,  going  to  London,  the  king  was  there  con- 
secrated by  Maurice,  bishop  of  London,  having  first  pro- 
mised to  restore  good  laws,  and  to  observe  the  cherished 
customs  of  the  nation.  WTien  Anselm,  the  archbishop, 
heard  of  these  events,  he  returned  to  England,  and  soon 
afterwards  celebrated  the  king's  nuptials  wiQi  Maud,  dau^- 
ter  of  Malcolm  king  of  Scotland  and  Margaret  his  queen. 
After  the  city  of  Jerusalem  was  taken,  as  before  related, 
and  a  great  victory  subsequently  gained  against  the  army  of 
the  emirs  of  Babylon,  Kobert,  duke  of  Normandy,  retmned 
to  his  States  in  the  month  of  August,  and  was  received  by 
all  his  people  with  great  rejoicings.  Thomas,  archbishop  of 
York,  a  prelate  of  great  genius  and  a  friend  to  the  Muses, 
was  taken  from  among  men. 

King  Henry  held  his  court  during  Christmas  at  West- 
minster, and  during  Easter  at  Winchester.  Soon  afterwards, 
the  great  men  of  &e  realm  became  disaffected  towards  him 
in  consequence  of  his  brother  Kobert's  claims  on  the  crown, 
which  he  was  preparing  to  assert  at  the  head  of  an  army. 
The  king  fitted  out  a  naval  armament  to  prevent  his  land- 
ing, but  part  of  it  went  over  to  the  duke,  on  his  arrival. 
He  landed  at  Portsmouth  on  the  1st  of  August,  and  the 
king  levied  a  large  army  to  oppose  him.  But  the  great 
men  on  both  sides,  being  averse  to  a  fratricidal  war, 
established  peace  between  them  upon  the  terms  that  Eobert 
should  receive  from  England  3000  silver  marks  ^  annually ; 
and  that  the  survivor  of  the  two  brothers  should  be  heir  to 
the  other,  dying  without  issue  male.  To  the  performance 
of  this  treaty,  twelve  nobles  of  the  highest  rank  on  both 
sides  solemnly  swore.  Kobert  then  remained  peaceably  at 
his  brother's  court  till  the  feast  of  St.  Michael,  and  Ihen 
returned  to  his  own  dominions.  Eanulph,  the  crafty  bishop 
of  Durham^,  who  had  been  thrown  into  prison  by  King 
Henry,  -at  the  instance  of  the  "  witan "  of  England,  having 

*  The  silver  mark  was  worth  in  these  times  160  pennies ;  and  a  pound 
weight  of  silver  was  coined  into  240  pennies. 

2  The  corrupt  judge  and  minister  of  William  Rufus,  before  mentioned. 


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A.D.  1102.]         REIGN  OF  HENRY  I.  341 

made  his  escape  from  the  Tower  of  London,  went  over  to 
Normandy,  and  was  the  means  of  fomentmg  the  designs  of 
Kobert  against  his  brother. 

King  Henry  jnstly  banished  the  traitorous  and  perfidious 
Earl  Kobert  de  Belesme.  The  king  had  laid  siege  to  his 
castle  of  Arundel,  but  finding  it  difficult  t6  reduce,  he  built 
forts  against  it,  and  then  went  and  besieged  Bridgenorth, 
till  that  castle  was  smrendered.  Robert  de  Belesme  then 
departed  to  Normandy  in  great  sorrow.  At  the  feast  of  St. 
Michael,  the  same  year,  Anselm,  the  archbishop,  held  a 
synod  at  London,  in  which  he  prohibited  the  English 
priests  from  living  with  concubines  ^  a  thing  not  before 
forbidden.  Some  thought  it  would  greatly  promote  purity ; 
while  others  saw  danger  in  a  strictness  which,  requiring  a 
continence  above  their  strength,  might  lead  them  to  fall  into 
horrible  uncleanness,  to  the  great  disgrace  of  their  Chris- 
tian profession.  In  this  synod,  several  abbots,  who  had 
acquired  their  preferment  by  means  contrary  to  the  will  of 
God,  lost  them  by  a  sentence  conformable  to  his  will.  The 
year  following,  Robert,  duke  of  Normandy,  came  over  to 
England,  and  by  the  king's  craftiness  was  induced,  for 
various  reasons,  to  release  him  from  his  obligation  of  pay- 
ing the  pension  of  3000  marks.  This  year  also  blood  was 
seen  to  spring  forth  from  a  field  at  Hampstead^,  in  Berk- 
shire. In  the  course  of  the  next  year,  quarrels  arose  again 
on  several  accounts  between  the  king  and  his  brother; 
whereupon  the  king  sent  some  knights  over  to  Normandy, 
who  were  harboured  by  the  duke's  rebellious  nobles,  and, 
plundering  and  burning  on  his  territories,  did  no  small 
damage  to  the  duchy.     William,  earl  of  Morton^,  also, 

*  "  Uxores,"  a  term  commonly  applied  to  either  the  wives  or  concubines 
of  priests,  the  former  being  regarded  as  no  better  than  the  latter.  "  The 
histories  of  these  times  are  full  of  the  commotions  excited  by  those  priests 
who  had  either  concubines  or  wives** — Murdochs  Mosheim,  vol.  ii.  p.  342, 
Henry  of  Huntingdon,  as  the  son  of  an  ecclesiastic,  speaks  with  some  re- 
serve of  the  decree  of  the  synod,  which,  an  archdeacon  himself,  he  could  not 
directly  impugn.     See  also  p.  262. 

^  Finchamstead  ?    See  the  year  1098. 

^  This  word  is  always  written  in  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  MSS.  Morteuil 
or  Moretuil,  and  generally  by  the  Latin  Chroniclers  "  de  Moritono."  The 
name  was  taken  from  a  town  in  Normandy^  formerly  written  Moretaine,  now 
Mortaigne. 


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243  HENBT  OF  HXrarOIGDON.  [BOOK  YH. 

whose  possessions  were  confiscated  by  the  kmg  for  treason, 
departed  to  Normandy.  He  was  a  man  of  high  character, 
consummate  in  counsel  and  energetic  in  action,  so  that  he 
imposed  and  inflicted  on  the  royal  troops  a  most  oppressive 
ransom  ^  This  year  there  appeared  four  white  circles 
round  the  sun. 

[a.d.  1105.]  King  Henry,  in  the  fifth  year  of  his  reign, 
sailed  over  to  Normandy,  to  make  war  on  his  brother.  He 
won  Caen  by  bribery,  and  Baieux  by  force,  with  the  aid  of 
the  Count  of  Anjou.  He  took  also  many  other  towns ;  and 
all  the  principal  men  of  Normandy  submitted  to  him. 
After  this,  in  the  month  of  August,  he  returned  to  Eng* 
land.  The  year  following,  the  Duke  of  Normandy  came 
amicably  to  the  king  at  Northampton,  entreating  to  be 
restored  to  his  brotherly  favour ;  but  Providence  not  per- 
mitting their  reconciliation,  the  duke  sailed  for  Normandy 
in  great  anger,  the  king  following  him  before  August 
Upon  his  laying  siege  to  the  castle  of  Tenerchebrai*,  the 
Duke  of  Normandy,  having  with  him  Robert  de  Belesme 
and  the  Earl  of  Morton,  with  all  their  adherents,  advanced 
against  him.  The  king,  on  his  side,  was  not  unprepared ; 
for  there  were  with  him  almost  all  the  chief  men  of  Nor- 
mandy, and  the  flower  of  the  forces  of  England,  Anjou, 
and  Brittany.  The  shrill  trumpets  sounded,  and  the  duke, 
with  his  few  followers,  boldly  charged  the  king's  numerous 
troops,  and,  well  trained  in  the  wars  of  Jerusalem,  his 
terrible  onset  repulsed  the  royal  army.  WiUiam,  earl  of 
Morton,  also  attacking  it  fi!X>m  point  to  point,  threw  it  into 
confusion.  The  king  and  the  duke,  with  great  part  of 
their  troops,  fought  on  foot,  that  they  might  make  a  deter- 
mined stand;  but  the  Breton  knights  bore  down  on  the 
flank  of  the  duke's  force,  which,  unable  to  sustain  the 
shock,  was  presently  routed.  Robert  de  Belesme,  perceiv- 
ing this,  saved  himself  by  flight;  but  Robert,  duke  of 
Normandy,  and  William,  earl  of  Morton,  were  made  pri- 
soners. Thus  the  Lord  took  vengeance  on  Duke  Robert ; 
because  when  He  had  exalted  him  to  great  glory  in  the 
holy  wars,  he  rejected  the  offer  of  the  kingdom  of  Jeru- 
salem, preferring  a  service  of  ease  and  sloth  in  Normaudy 

*  "  "Werram."    See  note  just  before,  p.  239.  '  Now  Tinchebrai. 


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A.D.  1107-8.]    BOBEBT,   DUKE   OF  NOBMANDT,   PBISONEE.     243 

to  serving  the  Lord  zealously  in  the  defence  of  the  holy 
city.  The  Lord,  therefore,  condemned  him  to  lasting 
inactivity  and  perpetual  imprisonment  On  the  day  of  our 
Lord's  supper*,  two  moons  appeared  in  the  heavens,  one  in 
the  east  and  one  in  the  west. 

In  the  seventh  year  of  King  Henry's  reign,  his  enemies 
being  now  destroyed  or  reduced  to  submission,  the  king 
settled  afiBsurs  in  Normandy  at  his  own  wiU  and  pleasure, 
and  then  returned  to  England.  His  illustrious  brother 
Kobert  and  the  Earl  of  Morton  were  thrown  into  dungeons  ; 
and  then  the  king,  now  triumphant  and  his  power  undis- 
puted, held  his  court  at  Windsor  during  Easter,  which  was 
attended  by  the  great  nobles  both  of  England  and  Nor- 
mandy with  great  reverence  and  fear.  For,  before  that, 
while  he  was  young,  and  even  after  he  became  king,  he 
was  held  in  the  greatest  contempt.  But  God,  who  judges 
fjEir  otherwise  than  the  sons  of  men,  who  exalteth  the  hum- 
ble and  subdueth  the  proud,  stripped  Eobert  of  the  honour 
for  which  he  was  everywhere  celebrated,  and  caused  the 
name  of  the  despised  Henry  to  be  famous  throughout  the 
world;  and  the  Almighty  bestowed  on  him  three  gifts — 
wisdom,  victory,  and  wealth,  which  made  him  more  pros- 
perous than  all  his  predecessors,  and  he  was  able  to  enrich 
aU  his  adherents.  This  year  died  Bishop  Maurice,  the 
founder  of  the  new  church  of  London  ^  and  Edgar,  king 
of  the  Scots,  who,  with  the  consent  of  King  Henry,  was 
succeeded  by  his  brother  Alexander. 

[a.d.  1108.]  King  Henry  went  over  to  Normandy  in  the 
eighth  year  of  his  reign,  on  the  decease  of  Philip,  king  of 
France,  to  resist  his  son  Philip,  the  new  king,  who  de- 
manded an  enormous  contribution'*.  The  same  year,  on 
the  death  of  Gerard,  archbishop  of  York,  he  was  succeeded 
by  Thomas.  In  the  course  of  the  year  following,  there 
came  ambassadors,  remarkable  for  their  great  stature  and 

'  Haandj  Thonday,  the  day  on  which  the  Eucharist  was  estahlished. 

*  St.  Paul's  Cathedral,  burnt  to  the  ground  in  1087,  and  which  was  now 
beang  rebuilt. 

«  "  Werra,"  again,  see  before,  pp.  239  and  242.  Was  it  here  the  tax,  fine, 
or  "relief  due  to  the  new  King  of  France  from  the  Duke  of  Normandy  on 
renewing  his  homage  1  The  Saxon  Chronicle  says  there  were  "many 
struggles"  between  the  two  kings  at  this  time,  but  we  are  hidebted  to 
Heniy  of  Huntingd<m  for  informing  us  what  was  the  disputed  matter. 

B  ^ 


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244  HEXRT   OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  VU 

splendid  attire,  from  Hemy,  the  Eoman  emperor^,  de- 
manding the  Idng's  daughter  in  marriage  for  their  master. 
He  received  the  envoys  at  London,  where  he  held  his  court 
during  Whitsimtide,  with  extraordinary  magnificence,  and 
the  betrothal  of  his  daughter  to  the  emperor  was  confirmed 
by  oath.  Anselm,  the  archbishop  and  Christian  philosopher, 
died  in  Lent.  The  year  following,  the  nuptials  of  the 
queen's  daughter^  with  the  emperor  were  solemnized,  to 
speak  briefly,  with  fitting  splendour.  The  king  taxed  every 
^  hide  of  land  in  England  three  shillings  for  his  daughter's 
marriage**.  The  same  year,  the  king  held  his  court  during 
Whitsuntide  at  New  Windsor,  which  he  had  himself  built ; 
and  he  deprived  of  their  estates  those  who  had  been  traitors 
to  him,  namely,  Phihp  de  Braiose,  William  Malet,  and 
William  Bainard ;  but  Elias,  the  count  of  Maine,  who  held 
it  as  a  fief  under  King  Henry,  was  put  to  death.  Upon 
this,  the  Coimt  of  Anjou  got  possession  of  his  daughter, 
with  the  county  of  Maine,  which  he  kept  against  King 
Henry's  will.  This  year  a  comet  made  a  very  unusual 
appearance ;  for,  rising  in  the  east,  when  it  had  mounted  in 
the  sky  it  seemed  to  take  a  retrograde  course.  The  same 
year,  Nicholas,  the  father  of  the  author  of  this  Book,  de- 
parted this  life,  and  was  buried, at  Lincoln;  of  hun  it  is 
said: — 

"  Star  of  the  church,  that  set  in  gloom. 
Light  of  the  clergy,  to  the  tomb 
Quench'd  in  its  darkness,  Lincohi's  son. 
The  honour'd  Nicholas,  is  gone. 
But  the  light  bursts  forth  the  heart  to  cheer, 
And  the  star,  seen  through  the  dimming  tear, 
Dawns  in  a  brighter  hemisphere." 

The  writer  has  inserted  this  notice  in  his  work,  that  he 
may  obtain  firom  his  readers  some  equivalent  for  his  in- 

*  Henry  V.  [of  Lorraine],  emperor  of  Germany. 

'  Matilda,  better  known  to  the  reader  of  English  history  as  the  Empress 
Maud.  Henry  the  emperor  died  shortly  afterwards,  without  her  having 
any  children  by  him  ;  and  she  then  married  Geoffrey  Plantagenet,  count  of 
Anjou,  by  whom  she  had  Henry,  afterwards  king  of  England. 

^  One  of  the  three  especial  taxes,  to  which  the  kings  of  England  were 
entitled  by  ancient  custom,  was  this  on  the  marriage  of  his  eldest  daughter. 
There  was  a  similar  levy  on  the  knighthood  of  his  eldest  son.  The  third 
was  due  for  the  king's  ransom  when  he  was  taken  prisoner  by  the  enemy. 


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A.D.   1111-16.]  HENRY  I.  245 

dustry,  so  far  as  they  may  be  disposed,  with  a  feeling  of 
pious  regard,  to  join  him  in  the  prayer,  "  May  his  soul  rest 
in  peace!     Amen."^ 

[a.d.  1111.]  In  the  eleventh  year  of  his  reign,  King 
Henry  went  over  to  Normandy,  because  the  Count  of 
Anjou  held  Maine  against  his  will,  and  he  wasted  his  terri- 
tories with  fire  and  sword,  according  to  the  laws  of  war. 
Kobert,  earl  of  Flanders,  now  died,  who  gained  distin- 
guished honour  in  the  Jerusalem  expedition,  whose  me- 
mory wiU  remain  for  ever.  He  was  succeeded  by  his  son 
Baldwin,  a  yoxmg  and  valiant  prince.  The  next  year  the 
king  banished  fi'om  Normandy  the  Coimt  of  Evreux  and 
William  Crispin ;  and  he  took  prisoner  Kobert  de  Belesme, 
the  great  offender  mentioned  before,  and  the  year  following, 
on  his  return  to  England,  condemned  him  to  imprisonment 
for  life  at  Wareham.  In  the  succeeding  year,  the  king  gave 
the  archbishopric  of  Canterbury  to  Ralph,  bishop  of  Ro- 
chester; and  then,  also,  on  the  death  of  Thomas,  arch- 
bishop of  York,  he  was  succeeded  by  Thurstan.  There 
arose  between  the  two  archbishops,  IMph  and  Thurstan, 
a  violent  controversy,  Ralph  reftising  submission  to  the 
archbishop  of  Canterbury,  according  to  ancient  custom. 
The  cause  was  often  heard  before  the  king,  and  the  subject 
was  canvassed  at  Rome,  but  no  decision  has  been  yet  made. 
This  year  the  king  led  an  army  into  Wales,  and  die  Welsh 
submitted  to  his  will,  his  power  being  so  overwhelming. 
A  bright  comet  appeared  towards  the  end  of  May.  The 
king  crossed  over  to  Normandy,  and  the  next  year 
caused  all  the  chief  men  of  the  duchy  to  take  the  oatJi  of 
allegiance  to  his  son  William,  and  afterwards  he  returned 
to  England. 

[a.d.  1116.]  King  Henry,  in  the  sixteenth  year  of  his 
reign,  was  present  at  Christmas  at  the  dedication  of  the 
church  of  St.  Albans,  which  was  consecrated  by  Robert, 
the  very  reverend  bishop  of  Lincoln,  on  the  request  of 
Richard,  the  well-known  abbot.  When  the  king  crossed 
over  the  sea  to  Normandy,  at  Easter,  a  violent  quarrel 
arose  between  him  and  the  King  of  France.     This  was  the 

'  This  notice  does  hononr  to  our  historian's  filial  piety.  Nicholas,  his 
father,  was  probably  archdeacon  of  Oxford.  See  Memoirs  of  Henry  of  Hun- 
tingdon in  the  Pre&ce  to  this  Tolume. 


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fU6  HENRY   OF  HUHTINGDON.  [BOOK  Vtl. 

origin  of  it:  Theobald,  count  of  Blois,  nephew  of  King 
Henry,  had  taken  arms  against  his  liege  lord  the  King  of 
France,  and  the  King  of  England  had  sent  troops  to  his 
aid,  to  the  no  small  annoyance  of  the  French  king.  In  the 
course  of  the  year  following,  therefore,  King  Henry  was  in 
great  difficulty ;  for  the  King  of  France,  and  the  Count  of 
Flanders,  and  the  Count  of  Anjou  had  sworn  together  to 
wrest  Normandy  from  King  Henry,  and  give  it  to  William, 
the  son  of  the  late  duke.  Many,  also,  of  his  own  nobility 
revolted  against  the  king,  much  to  his  detriment.  How- 
ever, he  was  not  imprepared,  for  he  had  secured  the  alliance 
of  Theobald,  already  named,  and  the  Count  of  Brittany, 
The  King  of  France  and  the  Earl  of  Flanders  entereid 
Normandy  at  the  head  of  an  army,  but  after  staying  there 
one  night,  they  were  struck  with  panic  at  the  approach  of 
King  Henry  with  the  troops  of  England,  Normandy,  and 
Brittany,  and  they  retreated  to  their  own  dominions  without 
fighting  a  battle.  This  year  the  English  were  grievously 
burdened  with  continual  taxes  and  various  exactions  occa- 
sioned by  the  king's  wants.  There  were  thunder  and 
hailstorms  on  the  kalends  [the  1st]  of  December,  and  in 
the  same  months  the  heavens  appeared  red,  as  if  they  were 
on  fire.  At  the  same  time  there  was  a  great  earthquake  in 
Lombardy,  which  threw  down,  overwhelmed,  and  destroyed 
churches  and  towers,  stnd  houses  and  men.  In  the  course 
of  the  year  following,  the  king  was  grievously  troubled  by 
the  continuance  of  the  warfare  of  the  before-mentioned 
princes,  until  the  valiant  Count  of  Flanders  was  unfortu- 
nately wounded  in  a  mutiny  of  his  troops  at  Eu,  in  Nor- 
mandy, and  retired  to  his  own  States.  Moreover,  Eobert, 
earl  of  Mellent,  the  greatest  politician  among  all  those  who 
had  dwelt  at  Jerusalem,  and  chancellor  of  King  Heniy, 
exhibited  his  folly  in  the  end  ;  for  when  he  would  neither, 
at  the  persuasion  of  the  priests,  give  up  the  lands  which  he 
had  appropriated,  nor  make  the  confession  which  it  was  his 
duty  to  do,  he  fell  away  and  died,  as  it  were,  of  inward 
weakness.  Well  then  was  it  said,  "The  wisdom  of  this 
world  is  fooUshness  with  God."  Then,  also.  Queen  Matilda 
ended  her  days ;  of  whose  gentleness,  and  excellence  of 
mind  it  has  been  said  : — 


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A.D.  1118-19.]    DEATH  OF  QUEEN  MATILDA.  347 

"  UndeceiT'd  by  fbrtnne'i  vil«% 
Calm  when  sJie  withdrew  her  tmileii 
Mirth  and  joy  were  all  her  fears ; 
Grosses  never  cost  her  tears. 
Lady  fiiir  !  a  chastened  grace 
Decked  with  nSodetty  thy  fttce. 
Qaetn  !  yet  lowlinesa  in  thee, 
Temper'd  thy  great  majesty. 
At  the  earliest  dawn  of  May  * 
Entering  on  an  endless  day, 
Thou  wert  wrapt  in  clouds  of  Hgitt, 
We  were  left  in  darkest  night" 

[a.d.  1119.]  King  Henry,  in  the  fifty-second  year  after 
the  Normans  conquered  England,  and  in  the  nineteenth 
year  of  his  reign,  fought  a  great  battle  with  the  King  of 
France^.  That  king  placed  the  first  division  of  his  army 
under  the  command  of  William,  the  son  of  Eobert,  King 
Henry's  brother,  supporting  him  with  the  main  body  of  his 
army*  On  the  other  side,  King  Henry  posted  his  [Norman] 
vassals  in  the  first  line ;  the  second,  consisting  of  his 
household  troops,  he  led  himself  on  horseback;  in  the 
third,  he  placed  his  sons,  with  the  main  body  of  infantry. 
At  the  outset,  the  first  line  of  the  French  unhorsed  and 
quickly  dispersed  the  Norman  knights.  It  afterwards 
attacked  the,  division  which  Henry  himself  commanded, 
and  was  itself  routed.  The  troops  imder  the  command  of 
the  two  kings  now  met,  and  the  battle  raged  fiercely ;  the 
lances  were  shivered,  and  they  fou^t  with  swords.  At 
this  time,  William  Crispin^  twice  struck  King  Henry  on 
the  head,  and  though  his  helmet  was  sword-proof,  the 
violence  of  the  blow  forced  it  a  little  into  the  king's  fore- 
head, so  that  blood  gushed  forth.  The  king,  however, 
returned  the  blow  on  his  assailant  with  such  force,  that 
though  his  helmet  was  impenetrable^  the  horse  and  its 

*  Queen  Matilda  died  on  the  1st  of  May,  1118. 

'  Henry  of  Huntingdon  omits  mentioning  in  the  text  of  his  history  where 
the  battle  was  fought,  but  the  verses  which  follow  supply  the  name  at  the 
place,  Noyon.  We  are  indebted  to  Henry  of  Huntingdon  for  a  fiill  account 
of  this  very  important  and  decisive  action,  of  which  the  Saxon  Gbreniele 

S'ves  only  a  slight  notice.     Indeed,  from  this  time,  or  shortly  afterwards, 
enry  of  Huntingdon  assumes  the  character  of  an  original  historian  of 
events  contemporary  with  the  period  in  which  he  lived. 
'  Count  of  Syrettz.  ' 


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248  HBNBT  OF  HUNTIHODON.  [BOOK  Vll. 

rider  were  struck  to  the  ground,  and  the  knight  was  pre 
sently  taken  prisoner  in  the  king's  presence.  Meanwhile, 
the  infantiy,  with  whom  the  king's  sons  were  posted,  not 
being  yet  engaged,  but  waiting  for  the  signal,  levelled  their 
^ears,  and  charged  the  enemy.  Upon  which  the  French 
were  suddenly  daunted,  and  broke  their  ranks,  and  fled. 
King  Henry,  thus  victorious,  remained  on  the  field  until 
all  file  nobles  of  the  defeated  araiy  were  taken  prisoners 
and  brought  before  him.  He  then  retiuned  to  Eouen, 
while  the  bells  were  ringing,  and  the  clergy  were  chant- 
ing hymns  of  thanksgiving  to  the  Lord  God  of  hosts. 
This  glorious  victory  has  been  thus  celebrated  in  heroic 
verse: — 

"  Where  Noyon's  tow'rs  rise  o*er  the  plain. 
And  Oiie  flows  onward  to  the  Seine, 
Two  banner'd  hotU  in  ranks  advance : 
Here,  Lewis  leads  the  powers  of  France; 
Henry  of  Bngland,  there,  commands 
His  Bnglish  and  his  Norman  bandiT* 
See  his  arm  the  foremost  crush. 
The  island  spearmen  onward  rash ; 
While  the  bold  chivalry  of  France 
Becoils  before  the  Norman  lance ; 
And  mattered  oaths  reveal  their  shame, 
As  they  carse  the  conqueror's  name. 
So  distant  ages  long  shall  tell 
Of  gallant  Henry,  first  to  quell 
On  his  own  soil  the  Frenchman's  pride, 
Where  Noyon's  field  with  blood  was  dyed ; 
And  conq'ring  England's  mighty  son 
The  spoils  and  laurell'd  trophies  won." 

The  same  year.  Pope  Gelasius  died,  and  was  buried  at 
Cluny.  Then  Guy,  archbishop  of  Vienna,  was  elected 
pope,  and  took  the  name  of  Calixtus.  He  held  a  council 
at  Kheims,  from  whence  he  journeyed  to  Gisors  to  meet 
King  Henry,  and  the  great  pope  and  great  king  conferred 
together.  Baldwin,  comit  of  Flanders,  died  of  Qie  wounds 
which  he  received  in  Normandy,  and  was  succeeded  by  his 
kinsman  Chai'les,  son  of  Canute,  king  of  Benmark. 

In  the  year  of  our  Lord  1120,  all  his  enemies  being  sub- 
dued, and  peace  restored  in  France,  King  Henry  came  over 
to  England.     But  in  the  passage,  the  .king's  two  sons, 


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A.D.  1120-1.]      SmPWBEOE  OF  HENRY  I.'s  SONS.  249 

William  and  Kichard,  and  his  daughter  and  niece,  with  the 
Earl  of  Chester,  and  many  nobles,  were  shipwrecked,  he- 
sides  the  king's  butlers,  stewards,  and  bakers,  all  or  most 
of  whom  were  said  to  have  been  tainted  with  the  sin  of 
sodomy.  Behold  the  terrible  vengeance  of  God !  SucWen — 
deaffir^wallowed  them  up  unshriven,  though  there  was 
no  wind  and  the  sea  was  calm.  Of  whom  the  poet  thus 
wrote- — 

"  When  England's  chiefs,  with  joyous  boasts. 
Exulting  sought  her  sea-girt  coasts. 
The  French  chastis'd,  the  Normans  quelled  ; 
Homeward  their  prosperous  course  they  held, 
And  o'er  the  tranquil  straits  they  steePd, 
While  yet  no  adverse  sign  appear'd ; 
Th'  horizon  lowering  suddenly. 
By  the  Almighty's  stem  decree. 
The  bark  which  bore  a  royal  freight 
Was  tempest  torn ;  and,  woful  fate  I 
Henry's  brave  sons  and  daughter  fair. 
With  Bnglaod's  chiefest,  perish'd  there, 
(Where  now  was  mirth  and  revelry?) 
Engnlph'd  beneath  the  raging  sea." 

[a.d.  1121.]  King  Henry  spent  Christmas  at  Bramton, 
with  Theobald,  coimt  de  Blois.  After  that  he  married  at 
Windsor,  Alice,  daughter  of  the  Duke  of  Louvain,  on  accoimt 
of  her  beauty.  At  Easter  he  was  at  Berkeley ;  and  at  Whit- 
suntide, he  and  the  new  queen  wore  their  crowns  at  Lon- 
don. In  the  summer,  he  led  an  army  into  Wales,  and  the 
Welsh  came  humbly  to  meet  him,  and  agreed  to  all  which 
his  royal  pleasure  required.  At  Christmas,  such  a  violent 
wind  as  has  scarcely  ever  been  known  not  only  blew  down 
houses,  but  towers  built  with  masonry. 

An  elegy  written  in  praise  of  the  queen's  beauty : — 

"  Why,  royal  Alice,  does  the  Muse 
To  aid  my  song  of  thee  refuse  1 
What  if  thy  radiant  charms  amaze. 
And  we,  in  awe  and  silence,  gaze  ! 

"  Not  dazzl'd  by  thy  diadem. 
And  fiiany  a  sparkling  precious  gem. 
We  veil  our  sight  in  mute  surprise, 
But  'neath*  the  lustre  of  thy  eyes. 


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^0  HSNKT  OF  nXJVTJXQMm.  [BOOK  VU. 

"  All  aids  of  ornament  are  acOTn'd, 
When  €barmi  are  Irighteat  unadom'd ; 
But  nature  stamped  her  cHoicett  grace 
On  thy  fair  form  and  beaming  face. 

"  Thengli  poor  my  lay,  yet  still  I  tnre 
You'll  reckon  me  your  humb^t  slaTe.** 

[A.D.  1122.]  The  year  following,  King  Henry  spent 
Christmas  at  Noi-wich,  Easter  at  Northampton,  and  Whit- 
suntide at  Windsor.  From  thence  he  went  to  London  and 
into  Kent,  and  afterwards  he  made  a  {nrogress  through 
Northumberland  to  Duriiam.  That  year  died  Ralph,  arch- 
bishop of  Canterbury,  aad  John,  bishop  of  Bath.  The 
next  year  the  king  spent  Christmas  at  Dunstable,  and 
from  tiience  went  to  Berkhampstead.  There  the  Almighty 
showed  forth  his  righteous  judgments  in  a  remai'kable 
manner.  There  was  a  certain  chancellor  of  the  king's, 
named  Ralph,  who  had  laboured  under  an  infirmity  of 
body  for  twenty  years,  but  was  constantly  in  coxnl^  more 
ready  for  any  roguery  than  younger  men,  oppressing  the 
innocent,  and  robbing  many  of  their  inheritance,  while  he 
boasted  that,  though  his  body  was  feeble,  his  mind  was 
vigorous.  This  man,  having  to  entertain  the  king,  was 
conducting  him  to  his  house,  when,  on  reaching  the  summit 
of  a  hill  from  which  the  mansion  could  be  seen,  he  was  so 
elated  that  he  fell  from  his  horse,  and  a  monk  rode  over 
him\  so  that  he  received  such  bruises  that  he  died  a  few 
days  afterwards.  What  a  fall  had  this  man's  pride  when 
God  willed  it !  From  thence  the  king  went  to  Woodstock, 
that  delightful  place,  which  was  both  a  royal  residence  and 
a  preserve  of  beasts  of  chase.  Robert,  bishop  of  Lincoln, 
died  while  he  was  there  with  the  king^,  whose  epitaph  runs 
thus : — 

1  Another  account  relates  that  it  was  a  monk  o£  Si  Albans,  whose  lands 
he  had  unjustly  seized. — Roffcr  of  Wendover, 

^  Robert  de  Bloet,  the  author's  patron,  already  mentioned,  see  p.  224. 
The  circumstances  of  his  death  are  thus  related  in  Henry  of  Huntingdon's 
Book,  "  De  Contemptu  Mundi ; "  and  nearly  in  the  same  words  in  the  Saxon 
Chronicle :  "  The  king  was  riding  in  his  deer-park,  and  Bx)ger,  bishop  of 
Salisbury,  was  on  one  side  of  him,  and  Robert  Bloet,  bishop  of  Lincoln,  on 
the  other ;  and  they  rode  there  talking.     Then  the  Bishop  of  Lincoln  sank 


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A.D.  1128.]  EEraJLPH  OF  BIBHOP  BLOET.  361 

"  Immortal  bonoor  and  enduring  £Eune 
Deck  Eobert's,  best  of  bisbops,  reTeiend  name. 
Wealth,  union  rare !  with  lowlineu  be  join'd. 
And  pow'r  with  bmnble  piety  combin'd.  ^ 

Patient  amidst  the  adverse  strokes  of  fete, 
A  judge,  to  sinners  eVn,  compassionate ; 
His  flo(i  ne'er  found  bim  an  imperious  lord, 
Tbey  bow'd  submissive  to  their  &tber^s  word; 
His  purpose  them,  with  sympathizing  care. 
To  shield  from  evil,  or  their  sorrows  share. 
The  tenth  of  Jan'ry  clos'd  this  fiilse  world's  dreams. 
And  saw  him  wake  to  truth's  eternal  beams." 

Afterwards,  at  the  feast  of  the  Purification,  tiie  king  gave 
the  archbishopric  of  Caaterbuiy  to  "William  of  Curboil, 
prior  of  Chick*.  During  Easter,  he  was  at  Winchester, 
where  he  gave  the  bishopric  of  Lincoln  to  Alexander,  an 
excellent  man,  vfho  was  nephew  to  Roger,  bishop  of  SaUs- 
bury'*.  Roger  was  justiciary  of  all  England,  and  second 
only  to  the  king.  The  king  also  gave  the  bishopric  of 
Batfi  to  Godfrey,  the  queen's  chaplain.  About  ^^^itsun- 
tide  he  crossed  the  sea.  Robert,  earl  of  Mellent,  had 
revolted  fi-om  him  after  a  public  quarrel;  and  the  kiiig 
besieged  and  took  his  castle  of  Pont^Audemer.  The  next 
year,  the  king  had  a  glorious  trixunph;  for  William  de 
Tankerville,  his  chamberlain,  fought  a  pitched  battle  with 
the  Earl  of  Mellent,  in  which  he  took  prisoners  the  Earl  of 
Mellent  and  Hugh  de  Montfort,  his  brother-in-law,  and 
Hugh,  the  son  of  Gervase,  and  delivered  them  to  the  king, 
who  committed  them  to  close  custody.  The  same  year 
died  Teulf,  bishop  of  Worcester,  and  Emulf,  bishop  of 
Rochester.     The  year  following  the  king  was  in  Normandy, 

down  and  said  to  the  king, '  My  lord  king,  I  am  dying  !'  And  the  king 
alighted  from  his  horse,  and  took  him  between  bis  arms,  and  bade  them  bear 
bim  to  his  inn,  and  he  soon  lay  there  dead  ;  and  they  took  his  body  with 
much  pomp  to  Lincoln  and  buried  him  before  St  Mar/s  altar." 

'  "  St.  Osythe,  in  Essex,  a  priory  rebuilt  A.i>.  1118  for  canons  of  the  Au- 
gustine order,  of  which  there  are  considerable  remains." — Ingram. 

*  So  in  the  text  of  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  though  Ingram  says  that  the 
use  of  this  name  (in  the  Saxon  Chronicle)  "  may  appear  rather  an  anticipa- 
tion of  the  modem  [title  of  the]  see  of  Salisbury,  which  was  not  then  in 
existence,  the  borough  of  Old  Sarum,  or  Sares-berie,  being  then  the  episco- 
pal seat ;  but  as  '  Sarum '  is  a  barbarous  and  unauthorized  corruption  of 
'Sorbiodunum '  or  '  Sai*down,'  that  appellation  would  be  equally  improper." 


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d5d  .  HENBY  OF  HTTNinfODON.  [BOOK  Vn. 

and  while  there  he  gave  the  bishopric  of  Worcester  to 
Simeon,  the  queen^s  chaplain,  and  the  bishopric  of  Chi- 
chester to  Sifrid,  abbot  of  Glastonbury.  Moreover,  Wil- 
liam, the  archbishop,  gave  the  bishopric  of  Eochester  to 
John,  his  archdeacon.  At  Easter,  John  of  OremaS  cardinal 
of  Home,  came  into  England,  and  visited  all  the  bishoprics 
and  abbeys,  not  without  having  many  gifts  made  him.  At 
the  feast  of  the  nativity  of  St.  Mary  he  held  a  synod  at 
London.  Now  as  Moses,  God*s  scribe,  records  in  Holy 
Writ  the  sins  as  well  as  the  virtues  even  of  his  own  an- 
cestors, for  instance,  the  incest  of  Lot,  the  wickedness  of 
Keuben,  the  treacherous  murders  of  Simeon  and  Levi,  and 
the  cruelty  of  Joseph's  brothers,  it  is  fit  that  I  should  con- 
form to  the  true  rules  of  history  in  speaking  of  the  evil  as 
well  as  the  good.  If  in  so  doing  I  shall  give  oflfence  to  any 
Eoman,  even  though  he  be  a  prelate,  let  him  hold  his 
peace,  lest  he  should  be  thought  to  be  a  disciple  of  John 
of  Crema.  This  cardinal,  who  in  the  council  bitterly  in- 
veighed against  the  concubines  of  priests,  saying  that  it 
was  a  great  scandal  that  they  should  rise  from  the  side  of  a 
harlot  to  make  Christ's  body,  was  the  same  night  surprised 
in  company  with  a  prostitute,  though  he  had  that  very  day 
consecrated  the  host.  The  fact  was  so  notorious  that  it 
could  not  be  denied,  and  it  is  not  proper  tliat  it  should  be 
concealed.  The  high  honour  with  which  the  cardinal  had 
been  everywhere  received  was  now  converted  to  disgrace, 
and,  by  the  judgment  of  God,  he  turned  his  steps  home- 
wards in  confusion  and  dishonour  ^.  The  same  year  died 
the  Emperor  Heruy,  who  was  son-in-law  of  King  Henry. 
The  severity  which  the  king  exercised  towards  offenders  is 
worth  mentioning ;  for  he  caused  almost  all  the  moneyers 
of  England  to  be  mutilated  of  certain  members,  and  their 
hands  to  be  struck  off  because  they  surreptitiously  debased 
the  coinage.  It  was  the  year  of  greatest  scarcity  in  om' 
times ;  a  horse-load  of  com  was  sold  for  six  shillings.  This 

*  Cremona?    Bnt  there  if  a  town  called  0«ma,  in  the  Bolognese. 

'  The  cardinal's  visitation  is  mentioned  in  the  Saxon  Chronicle,  but  we 
are  indebted  to  Henry  of  Huntingdon  for  the  bit  of  scandal  with  which  his 
own  account  of  it  closes.  Our  archdeacon  evidently  enjoys  the  story,  though 
he  thought  it  necessary  to  introduce  it  with  an  apology. 


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A.D.  1125-6.]      ALEXANDER,   BISHOP   OP  LINCOLN.  26S 

year,  Wflliam,  archbishop  of  Canterbury,  and  Thurstan, 
archbishop  of  York,  and  Alexander,  bisdiop  of  Lincohi\ 
journeyed  to  Borne.  Bishop  Alexander's  noble  Uberality 
and  enduring  reputation  have  been  celebrated  in  heroic 
verse : — 

**  Illustrious  Alexander,  thj  great  name 

Centres  not  in  thyself  alone  its  fame ; 

Widely  diffos'd,  thy  nobleness  of  mind 
-  Sheds  its  bright  lostre  over  human  kind. 

Not  for  himself  of  wealth  he  gathers  store ; 

The  prelate  gathers  but  to  give  the  more ; 

Freely  he  gives,  anticipating  prayVs, 

Counting  the  people's  wealth  not  his,  but  theirs. 

The  glory  of  his  see,  his  clergy's  pride. 
His  people's  kind  director,  teacher,  guide ; 
His  yoke  is  light,  love  is  with  pow^r  combin'd. 
And  liberty  with  decent  order  join'd. 
His  doctrines  mild  are  drawn  from  holy  writ, 
His  converse  season'd  with  a  modest  wit. 
Long  may  he  Lincoln's  noble  temple  grace. 
And  higher  raise  her  proud  and  ancient  race ! " 

[a.d.  1126.]  In  the  twenty-sixth  year  of  his  reign,  King 
Henry  spent  Christmas,  Easter,  and  Whitsuntide  in  Nor- 
mandy, where  he  procured  the  ratification  of  the  covenants 
of  his  ^eat  vassals  in  a  manner  befitting  so  powerful  a 
king^.  Betuming  to  England,  he  brought  with  him  his 
daughter  the  empress,  the  widow  of  the  great  prince  before 
mentioned.  Bobert,  bishop  of  Chester^,  now  died.  The 
year  following,  the  king  held  his  court  during  Christmas  at 
Windsor,  from  whence  he  proceeded  to  London.    During 

'  To  whom  Henry  of  Huntingdon  dedicated  this  History.  It  is  supposed 
that  our  author  accompanied  his  patron  to  Bome. 

^  The  sense  is  very  obscurely  expressed,  and  there  is  nothing  of  the  sort 
in  the  Saxon  Chronicle  under  this  year ;  but  as  it  appears  that  the  Empress 
Maud  had  now  returned  to  her  father  after  the  emperor's  death,  Henry  of 
Huntingdon  probably  means  that  the  king  obtained  from  his  Norman  barons 
an  acknowledgment  of  the  fealty  due  to  her  as  his  heir  apparent  ;  more 
especially  as  we  find  him  taking  the  same  course  with  the  "head  men  of 
England,  both  clergy  and  laity,"  the  year  following. — See  Sax.  Chron, 

*  The  present  bishopric  of  Chester  was  one  of  the  new  sees  founded  after 
the  Reformation  ;  but  the  seat  of  the  bishopric  of  Lichfield  was  removed  in 
1076  to  Chester,  and  the  bishops  of  Lichfield,  who  for  a  short  time  sat 
there,  are  sometimes  styled  bishops  of  Chester. 


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264  HENRT   OF   HUNTINGDON  [BOOK  YII. 

Lent  and  Easter  he  was  at  Woodstock.  While  he  was 
there  he  received  this  message :  "  Charles,  earl  of  Flanders, 
your  dearest  friend,  has  heen  treacherously  assassinated 
by  his  nobles  in  a  church  at  Bruges ;  and  the  King  of 
IVance  has  bestowed  the  earldom  of  Flanders  on  your 
nephew  and  enemy,  William;  whose  power  being  esta- 
blished he  has  revenged  the  death  of  Charles  by  subjecting 
his  murderers  to  various  kinds  of  torture."  Upon  hearing 
this  the  king  was  in  great  trouble,  and  held  a  council  at 
London  during  the  Rogation  days ;  and  WilUam,  archbishop 
of  Canterbury,  was  there  also  at  his  vill  in  Westminster. 
When  the  long  went  to  Winchester  at  Whitsuntide,  he 
sent  his  daughter  to  Normandy,  to  be  married  to  the  son 
of  the  Earl  of  Anjou^,  and  the  king  himself  followed  her  in 
the  month  of  August.  Richard,  bishop  of  London,  having 
died,  the  king  conferred  the  bishopric  on  Gilbert,  a  man  of 
imiversal  learning,  Richard,  bishop  of  Hereford,  also  now 
died. 

[a.d.  1128.]  Heniy,  the  wise  king,  spent  the  whole  of  the 
next  yeai'  in  Normandy,  and  made  a  hostile  incursion  into 
France,  because  the  French  king  supported  his  nephew  and 
enemy.  He  encamped  eight  days  at  Epemon  as  securely 
as  if  he  had  been  in  his  own  dominions,  and  compelled 
King  Lewis  to  withdraw  his  succour  from  the  Earl  of 
Flanders.  While  King  Henry  abode  there  he  made  in- 
quiries concerning  the  origin  and  progress  of  the  reign  of 
the  Franks ;  upon  which  some  one  present,  who  was  not 
ill-informed,  thus  replied:  "Dread  king,  the  Franks,  like 
most  European  nations,  sprung  from  the  Trojans.  For 
Antenor  and  his  followers,  becoming  fugitives  after  the  fall 
of  Troy,  founded  a  city  on  the  borders  of  Pannonia,  called 
Sicambria.  After  the  death  of  Antenor,  these  people  set 
up  two  of  their  chiefs  as  governors,  whose  names  were 
Tm-got  and  Franction,  from  whom  the  Franks  derived 
their  name.  After  their  deaths,  Marcomirus  was  elected; 
he  was  the  father  of  Pharamond,  the  first  king  of  the 
Franks.  King  Pharamond  was  the  father  of  Clovis  the 
Long-haired,  from  whence  the  Frank  kings  were  called 

>  The  Empress  Matilda  now  contracted  a  second  marriage  with  GteoSrej, 
eldest  son  of  Fulk,  count  of  Anjon. 


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A.D.  1128.]  THE  KIKOB  OF  THE   FRAMES.  255 

*  long-haired.'  On  the  death  of  Clovis  he  was  succeeded 
by  Merove,  from  whom  the  Frank  kings  were  called  Me- 
rovingians. Merove  begat  Childeric;  Childeric,  Clovis, 
who  was  baptized  by  St.  Kemi ;  Clovis,  Clothaire ;  Clo- 
thaire,  Chilperic ;  Chilpeiic,  Clothaire  11. ;  Clothaire  XL 
begat  Dagobert,  a  king  of  great  renown  and  much  beloved ; 
Dagobert  begat  Clovis  [II.] ;  Clovis  had  three  sons  by  his 
pious  queen  Bathilde,  viz.  Clothaire,  Childeric,  and  Theo- 
doric;  King  Theodoric  begat  Childebert;  Childebert,  Da- 
gobert [II.?];  Dagobert,  Theodoric  [11.?];  Theodoric, 
Clothaire  [in.  ?],  the  last  king  of  this  line.  Hilderic,  the 
next  king,  received  the  tonsure,  and  was  shut  up  in  a 
monastery.  In  another  line,  Osbert  was  the  fatiier  of 
Arnold,  by  a  daughter  of  King  Clothaire ;  Arnold  begat  St. 
Amulf,  who  was  afterwards  bishop  of  Metz;  St.  Amulf, 
Anchises ;  Anchises,  Pepin,  the  mayor  of  the  palace ;  Pepin, 
Charles  Martel;  Charles,  King  Pepin ;  King  Pepin,  Charles 
the  Great,  the  emperor,  a  bright  star,  which  eclipsed  the 
•  lustre  of  all  his  predecessors  and  all  his  posterity ;  Charles 
begat  Lewis  the  emperor ;  Lewis  the  emperor,  Charles  the 
B£dd ;  Charles,  King  Lewis,  father  of  Charles  the  Simple ; 
Charles  the  Simple,  Lewis  [II.];  Lewis,  Lothaire;  Lo- 
thaire,  Lewis,  the  last  king  of  this  line.  On  the  death  of 
Lewis,  the  Frank  nobles  chose  for  their  king,  Hugh,  who 
was  son  of  Hugh  the  Great.  Hugh  begat  the  pious  King 
Robert.  Robert  had  three  sons,  Hugh,  the  beloved  duke ; 
Henry,  a  most  clement  king;  and  Robert,  duke  of  Bur- 
gundy. Henry  begat  King  Philip,  who  ultimately  became 
a  monk,  and  Hugh  the  Great,  who  in  the  holy  wars  joined 
the  other  princes  of  Europe,  and  rescued  Jerusalem  from 
the  Infidels,  in  the  year  of  our  Lord  1095.  Philip  was  the 
father  of  Lewis,  the  king  at  present  reigning.  If  he  trod 
in  the  footsteps  of  his  warlike  ancestors,  you,  O  king,  would 
not  now  be  so  safe  within  his  dominions."  After  this,  King 
Henry  withdrew  into  Normandy.  And  now,  by  the  king's 
intrigues,  a  certain  duke  named  Theodoric^  came  from  out 
of  Germany,  having  with  him  some  Flemish  nobles,  and 
set  up  lalse  pretensions  to  the  possession  of  Flanders. 
William,  the   earii  of  Flanders,  assembled   troops,  and 

'  Landgrave  of  Alsace. 


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266  HENRY   OF   HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  VII 

marched  to  oppose  him.  The  battle  was  fought  with  great 
bravery.  Earl  William  supplied  his  inferiority  in  numbers 
by  his  irresistible  valour.  His  armour  all  stained  with  the 
enemy's  blood,  his  flaming  sword  hewed  down  the  hostile 
ranks ;  and,  imable  to  withstand  the  terrible  force  of  his 
youthful  arm,  they  fled  in  consternation.  The  victorious 
earl  shut  up  the  enemy  in  their  camp  S  which  would  have 
been  surrendered  on  the  morrow,  but  he  received  a  slight 
wound  in  the  hand,  of  which,  by  the  will  of  God,  he  died, 
just  as  he  had  completed  the  destruction  of  the  invaders. 
The  noble  youth,  short  as  his  life  was,  earned  immortal 
renown ;  the  poet  Walo  thus  speaks  of  him : — 

"  Let  stars  a  bright  star,  from  its  orbit  torn. 
And  Deities,  a  god-like  hero  mourn ! 
Can  they  be  mortal?    See  the  Gfod  of  war, 
A  prodigy,  fiill  lifeless  from  his  car. 
'Tis  one,  at  least,  divinity  inspires, 
Filling  his  manly  soul  with  martial  fires. 
Dauntless  he  turns  to  flight  from  no  attack ; 
No  winged  arrows  pierce  him  in  the  back ; 
Onward  he  rushes  with  the  storm  of  war, 
His  foes,  with  wonder  startled  from  a&r. 
As  from  the  clouds  receive  the  coming  crash, 
Himself  the  thunder's  bolt,  the  lightning's  flash. 

In  Normandy  his  infiint  cradle  stood. 

And  Flanders  raised  his  tomb  beside  her  oozy  flood  ; 

One  saw  him  rise  in  smiles,  the  other  set  in  blood." 

The  same  year,  Hugh  Paganus,  master  of  the  order  of 
the  Knights  Templars  of  Jerusalem,  visited  England.  On 
his  retmn  he  was  accompanied  by  many  nobles,  among 
whom  was  Geoflfrey*,  duke  [count]  of  Anjou,  afterwards 
king  of  Jerusalem.  Randulph  Flambard,  bishop  of  Dur- 
ham, and  WiUiam  Giffiard,  bishop  of  Winchester,  died  the 
same  year. 

1  The  Saxon  Chronicle  is  silent  as  to  the  German  invasion,  but  says  that 
the  earl  died  in  war  with  his  uncle  King  Henry,  being  wounded  in  battle  by 
a  servant,  of  which  he  died,  after  being  received  at  the  monastery  of  St 
Bertin,.  where  he  became  a  monk  four  days  before  his  death.  Roger  of 
Wendover  agrees  with  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  only  that  he  says  the  earl  was 
besieging  £u  against  King  Henry  when  he  was  wounded  and  died. 

*  It  was  Fulk,  count  of  Anjou,  who  took  the  cross  and  went  to  Jerusa- 
lem, relinquishing  his  county  to  his  son  Geoflrey,  who  married  the  Empress 
Maud. 


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A.D.  1129.]  BEIGN   OF  HENRY  I.  257 

The  year  following  [a.d.  1129],  Lewis,  king  of  France, 
raised  his  son  Philip  to  the  throne ;  and  King  Henry  re- 
turned with  joy  to  England,  leaving  all  things  in  tranquil- 
lity in  France,  Flanders,  Normandy,  Brittany,  Maine,  and 
Anjou.  He  then  held  a  great  council  at  London  on  the 
first  of  August  regarding  flie  prohibition  of  priests  having 
concubines^.  There  were  present  at  this  council  WiUiam, 
archbishop  of  Canterbury,  and  Thurston,  archbishop  of 
York,  Alexander,  bishop  of  Lincoln,  Koger,  bishop  of  Salis- 
bury, (jilbert,  bishop  of  London,  John,  bishop  of  Kochester, 
SigeMd,  bishop  of  Stissex  [Chichester],  Godfrey,  of  Bath, 
Simon,  of  Worcester,  Everard,  of  Norwich,  Bernard,  of 
St.  David's,  and  Hervey,  the  first  bishop  of  Ely.  The  sees 
of  Winchester,  Durham,  Chester,  and  Hereford  were  vacant. 
The  bishops  were  the  pillars  of  the  State,  and  bright  beams  of 
sanctity  at  that  time.  But  the  king  deceived  them  through 
the  simplicity  of  William,  the  archbishop,  inasmuch  as 
they  gave  the  king  jurisdiction  in  the  matter  of  priests' 
concubines ;  imprudently  as  it  afterwards  appeared,  when 
the  aflfair  ended  disgracefully.  For  the  king  received  large 
sums  of  money  from  the  priests  for  licence  to  Uve  as  before. 
Then,  when  it  was  too  late,  the  bishops  repented  of  the 
concessions  they  had  made,  it  being  apparent  to  all  that 
they  had  been  deceived,  and  had  subjected  the  clergy  to 
exactions.  The  same  year  those  who  had  followed  Hugh 
Paganus  to  Jerusalem,  as  before  mentioned,  met  with  a 
serious  disaster.  For  the  new  settlers  of  the  Holy  Laud 
had  offended  the  Almighty  by  their  lust  and  robberies,  and 
all  kinds  of  wickedness.  But  as  it  is  written  in  Moses  and 
the  Book  of  Kings,  "  Their  wickedness  in  those  places  shall 
not  long  remain  unpunished,"  on  the  eve  of  St.  Nicholas  a 
large  body  of  the  Christians  were  overcome  by  a  very  few  of 
the  imbelievers,  contrary  to  what  generally  occmred.  During 
the  siege  of  Damascus,  when  the  greatest  part  of  the  Chris- 
tian army  had  marched  out  to  collect  provisions,  the  Infidels 
were  astonished  at  seeing  those  who  were  so  numerous  and 
brave  take  to  flight  at  their  approach.  They  pursued  and 
slaughtered  great  numbers  of  them,  and  those  who  escaped 
the  sword,  and  sought  refuge  in  the  mountains,  suffered 

>  See  note  before,  page  241. 


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5^58  HENBY  OF  HUKTO^ODON.  [BOOK  TH. 

go  severely  from  a  snow  storm  and  excessive  cold,  the 
instrmuents  of  Providence,  that  scarcely  any  one  survived. 
It  happened  also  the  same  year  that  the  son  of  Philip, 
king  of  France,  who  had  been  crowned  king  as  already 
mentioned,  when  riding  out  for  sport,  his  horse's  feet  stum- 
bling over  a  boar  he  met  with,  he  was  thrown  to  ihe 
ground,  and,  breaking  his  neck,  died  on  the  spot.  What  a 
sad,  singular,  and  wonderful  casualty!  In  what  a  little 
moment,  and  by  how  trivial  an  accident,  was  such  great 
majesty  brought  to  its  end ! 

[A.D.  1130.]  In  the  thirtieth  yeax  of  his  reign,  King 
Henry  was  at  Winchester  during  Christmas,  and  during 
Easter  at  Woodstock,  where  Geoffi?ey  de  Clinton  was 
arraigned  on  a  false  charge  of  treason  against  the  king. 
At  the  Rogations  he  went  to  Canterbury,  to  be  present  at 
the  consecration  of  the  new  cathedral  diurch.  At  the  feast 
oi  St.  Midiael  he  crossed  over  to  Normandy.  The  same 
year  Pope  Honorius  deceased.  The  year  following  the 
king  entertained  Pope  Innocent  at  Chartres,  refusing  to 
acknowledge  Anaclete.  These  popes  were  chosen  by  con- 
tending parties  at  Home ;  but  Innocent  having  been  expelled 
from  the  city  by  the  violence  of  Anaclete,  who  before  was 
called  Peter  of  Lewes,  was,  by  the  influence  of  King  Heniy, 
acknowledged  by  all  the  States  of  France.  After  that,  m 
the  summer,  he  returned  to  England,  bringing  his  dar^hter 
with  him.  There  was  th^a  held,  on  the  feast  of  the  Na- 
tivity of  the  Blessed  Vii^in,  a  great  council  at  Northani|rton, 
in  which  were  assembled  all  the  great  men  of  England,  and 
on  deliberation,  it  was  determined  that  the  king's  daughter 
should  be  restored  to  her  husband,  the  Count  of  Anjou,  as 
he  demanded.  She  was  accordingly  sent,  and  received 
with  the  pomp  due  to  so  great  a  princess.  After  Easter 
died  Reginald,  abbot  of  Ramsey,  the  founder  of  the  new 
church  fliere.  In  the  beginning  of  winter  died  Hervey, 
first  bishop  of  Ely.  The  year  following  the  king  was  at 
Dunstable  during  Christmas,  and  at  Woodstock  during 
Easter.  After  that,  there  was  a  great  plea  at  London, 
where,  among  other  matters,  the  main  subject  was  the 
dispute  between  the  Bishop  of  St.  David's  and  the  Bishop 
of  Glamorgan^  respecting  the  boundaries  of  their  dioceses. 
'  LkndaE 


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A.t).  1135.]  T>EA1S  OF  HENST  I.  259 

Baldwin,  long  of  Jerusalem,  died,  and  was  succeeded  by 
Geoffrey^. 

In  the  thirty- third  year  of  his  reign  King  Henry,  dur- 
ing Christinas,  lay  sick  at  Windsor.  In  the  end  of  Lent 
there  was  a  meeting  at  London  respecting  the  Bishops 
of  St.  David's  «nd  Glamorgan^,  and  also  the  contention 
between  the  Archbishop  of  York  and  the  Bishop  of  Lin- 
cohi.  The  king  spent  Easter  in  the  New  Hall  at  Oxford ; 
and  .  at  the  Rogations  there  was  another  meeting  at  Win- 
chester about  the  above  matters.  After  Whitsuntide  the 
king  gave  the  bishopric  of  Ely  to  Nigel,  and  the  bishopric 
of  Durham  to  G-odfrey  liie  Chancellor.  The  king  also 
erected  a  new  bishopric  at  Carlisle '^j  and  then  he  crossed 
over  the  sea.  There  Was  an  eclipse  of  the  sun  on  the  lOth 
of  August.  The  year  following  King  Heniy  remained  in 
Normandy,  by  reason  of  Ms  great  delight  in  his  grand- 
children, bom  of  his  daughter  by  the  Oount  of  Anjou. 
Gilbert,  bishop  of  London,  and  tlie  Bishop  of  Llandaff  died 
this  year  on  tiieir  way  to  Rome,  respecting  their  cause  so 
long  pending.  This  year,  also,  Archbishop  William,  and 
Alexander,  bishop  of  Lincoln,  went  over  the  sea  to  the 
king,  on  the  controversy  there  was  between  them  respecting 
certain  customs  of  their  dioceses. 

In  his  thirty-fifth  year  King  Henry  still  continued  in 
Normandy,  though  he  often  proposed  to  return  to  England, 
an  intention  which  was  never  fulfilled.  His  daughter 
detained  him  on  accoimt  of  sundry  disagreements,  which 
had  their  origin  m  various  causes,  between  the  king  and 
the  Count  of  Anjou,  and  which  were  fomented  by  the  arts 
of  his  daughter.  These  disputes  irritated  the  king,  and 
roused  an  ill  feeling,  which  some  have  said  resulted  in  a 
natural  torpor,  which  was  the  cause  of  his  death.  For,  re- 
turning from  lumting  at  St.Denys  in  the  "Wood  of  Lions,'* 
h^  partook  of  some  lampreys,  of  which  he  was  fond,  though 
they  always  disagreed  with  him ;  and  though  his  physician 
recommended  him  to  abstain,  the  king  would  not  submit 
to  his  salutary  advice ;  according  to  what  is  written : — 
"  Men  strive  'gainst  rules,  and  seek  forbidden  things." 

1  Fulk  ]  see  note,  p.  256.  ^  Llandaff. 

^  The  Saxon  Chronicle  does  not  mention  the  foundation  of  this  bishopric 
Ethelwulf,  prior  of  St.  Oswalds,  the  king's  confessor,  was  the  first  bishop. 

S  3 


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260  HEMBY  OF  HUNTIKODON.  [BOOK  YH. 

This  repast  bringing  on  ill  humours,  and  violently  exciting 
similar  symptoms,  caused  a  sudden  and  extreme  disturb- 
ance, under  which  his  aged  frame  simk  into  a  deathly 
torpor;  in  the  reaction  against  which,  Nature  in  her  strug- 
gles produced  an  acute  fever,  while  endeavouring  to  throw 
off  the  oppressive  load.  But  when  all  power  of  resistance 
fiEtiled,  this  great  king  died  on  the  first  day  of  December 
[1135],  after  a  reign  of  thirty-five  years  and  three  months. 
And  now,  with  the  end  of  so  great  a  king,  I  propose  to  end 
the  present  Book,  entreating  tlie  Muse  to  furnish  such  a 
memorial  of  him  as  he  deserved : — 

Hark  !  how  unnnmber'd  tongues  lament 
Hbnbt,  the  wide  world's  ornament 
Olympus  echoes  back  the  groan, 
And  Gods  themselves  his  fote  bemoan. 
Imperial  Jove  from  his  right  hand 
Hight  take  the  sceptre  of  command ; 
Mercury  borrow  winged  words, 
Mars  share  with  him  the  dash  of  twords 
Alcides'  strength,  Minerva's  wit, 
Apollo's  wisdom,  him  befit : 
Form'd  like  the  Deities  to  shine. 
He  shar'd  their  attributes  divine. 
England,  his  cradle  and  his  throne. 
Mourns,  in  his  glory  lost,  her  own ; 
Her  great  duke,  weeping,  Normandy 
Saw  in  her  bosom  lifeless  lie. 


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A.D.1135.]  .  CHABAOTEB  OF  HENRY  I.  261 


BOOK  VIILi 

On  the  death  of  the  great  King  Henry,  his  character  was 
freely  canvassed  by  the  people,  as  is  usual  after  men  are 
dead.  Some  contended  tiiat  he  was  eminently  distinguished 
for  three  brilliant  gifts.  These  were,  great  sagacity,  for 
his  coimsels  were  profoimd,  his  foresight  keen,  and  his 
eloquence  commanding ;  success  in  War,  for,  besides  other 
splendid  achievements,  he  was  victorious  over  the  king 
of  France ;  and  wealth,  in  which  he  far  surpassed  aU  his 
predecessors.  Others,  however,  taking  a  different  view^, 
attributed  to  him  three  gross  vices :  avarice,  as,  though 
his  wealth  was  great,  in  imitation  of  his  progenitors  he 
impoverishedfthe  people  by  taxes  and  exactions,  entangUng 
them  in  the  toils  of  informers ;  cruelty,  in  that  he  plucked 
out  the  eyes  of  his  kinsman,  the  Earl  of  Morton,  in  his 
captivity,  though  the  horrid  deed  was  unknown  until  death 
revealed  the  king's  secrets :  and  they  mentioned  other  in- 
stances of  which  I  will  say  nothing ;  and  wantonness,  for, 

^  This  Book  of  Huntingdon's  History  has  been  collated  for  the  purpose  of 
the  present  translation,  with  two  MSS.,  from  which  a  number  of  corrections 
of  Savile's  text,  besides  those  mentioned  in  the  notes,  and  several  additions, 
have  been  made.  In  Savile's  arrangement,  which  has  been  followed,  it 
forms  the  eighth  Book ;  but  in  the  order  of  the  two  MSS.  the  tenth ;  two 
others  being  inserted  before  it,  and  forming  the  eighth  and  ninth.  See  the  Ob- 
icrvaiions  in  the  Pr^ace. 

^  The  Royal  MS.  differs  here  from  the  Arundel  MS.  and  Savile's  printed 
text.     After  "  others  taking  a  different  view,"  it  reads  as  follows  : — 

"  For  their  poisoned  minds  led  them  to  humiliate  him,  [and  they  alleged 
that  his  extreme  avarice  induced  him  to  oppress  the  people  with  taxes  and 
exactions,  entangling  them  in  the  toils  of  informers.]  But  those  who  asserted 
this  did  not  recollect,  that  although  his  character  was  such  that  it  struck 
terror  into  all  his  neighbours,  yet  this  very  affluence  contributed,  in  no  small 
degree,  to  make  him  formidable  to  his  enemies ;  and  that  he  governed  his 
sea-girt  territories  in  great  peace  and  prosperity,  so  that  every  man's  house 
•was  his  castle.     [Thus  men's  opinions  were  divided.]" 

In  the  Royal  MS.  the  portions  in  brackets  are  crossed  through  in  red,  and 
there  is  the  following  note  in  the  margin  :  "  This  is  borrowed  from  Horace 
in  his  Epistles,  who  calls  the  secret  robbery  of  the  poor  a  low  poison." 


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j26^  HENix  ov  Bmrns&DGtL  [noc^  rm^ 

like  Solomon,  he  was  perpetually  enslaved  by  female  seduc- 
tions. Such  remarks  were  freely  bruited  abroad.  But  in 
the  troublesome  times  which  succeeded  from  the  atrocities 
of  the  Normans,  whatever  King  Henry  had  done,  either 
despotically,  or  in  the  regular  exercise  of  his  royal  autho- 
rity, appeared  in  comparison  most  excellent 

For  in  aU  haste  came  Stephen,  the  youngest  brother  of 
Theobald,  count  de  Blois,  a  resolute  and  audacious  man^ 
who,  disregarding  his  oath  of  fealty  to  King  Henry's  daugh- 
ter, tempted  God  by  seizing  the  crown  of  England  with 
the  boldness  and  eflfrontery  belonging  to  his  character. 
William  [Gorboil],  archbishop  of  Canterbury,  who  had 
been  the  first  to  swear  allegiance  to  the  late  king's  dau^- 
ter,  consecrated,  alas !  the  new  king^ ;  wherefore,  the  Itord 
visited  him  with  the  same  judgment  which  he  had  inflicted 
on  him  who  struck  Jeremiah,  the  great  priest :  he  died 
within  a  year.  Boger,  also,  the  powerful  bishop  of  Salis- 
bury, who  had  taken  a  similar  oath,  and  persuaded  others 
to  do  t±ie  same,  contributed  all  in  his  power  to  raise 
Stephen  to  the  throne.  He,  too,  by  the  just  judgment  of 
Ood,  was  afterwards  thrown  into  prison,  and  miserably 
afflicted  by  the  very  king  he  had  assisted  to  make.  In 
short,  all  the  earls  and  great  barons  who  had  thus  sworn 
fealty,  transferred  their  allegiance  to  Stephen,  and  did  him 
homage.  It  was  a  bad  sign,  that  the  whole  of  England 
should  so  quickly,  without  hesitation  or  struggle,  as  it  were 
in  the  twinkling  of  an  eye,  submit  to  Stephen,  After  his 
coronation,  he  held  his  court  at  London. 

Meanwhile,  the  iremain&  of  King  Henry  lay  sdU  unburied 
in  Normandy;  for  he  died  on  the  1st  of  December, 
[a.d.  1135.]  His  corpse  was  carried  to  Bouen,  whex-e  his 
bowels,  with  his  brain  and  eyes,  were  deposited.  The  body 
being  slashed  by  knives,  and  copiously  sprinkled  with  salt, 
was  sown  up  in  ox  hides  to  prevent  the  ill  effluvia,  which 
so  tainted  the  air  as  to  be  pestilential  to  the  bystanders. 
Even  the  man  who  was  hired  by  a  large  reward  to  sever 

*  Henry  of  Huntingdon  emits  to  notice  the  debates  wHch  took  place 
among  the  great  ecclesiastics  respecting  the  raliditj  of  Stephen's  pretensions 
and  the  propriety  of  crowning  him,  which  are  related  in  the  '*  Acts  of  Step 
phen  : "  see  them  under  the  year  1136« 


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A.B.1135.J  KiNct  Stephen's  accession.  ^09 

the  head  with  an  axe  and  extract  the  brain,  which  was  very 
offensive,  died  in  c(msequence,  although  he  wore  a  thick 
linen  veil ;  so  that  his  wages  were  dearly  earned.  [He 
was  the  last  of  Ihat  great  multitude  King  Henry  slew.^] 
The  corpse  being  then  carried  to  Caen,  was  deposited  in 
the  church  where  his  father  was  int^red ;  but  notwith- 
standing the  quantity  of  salt  which  had  been  used,  and  the 
folds  of  skins  in  which  it  was  wrapped,  so  much  foul  matter 
continually  exuded,  that  it  was  caught  in  vessels  placed 
under  the  bier,  in  emptying  which  the  attendants  were 
affected  with  horror  and  fain  tings.  Observe,  then,  reader, 
how  the  corpse  of  this  mighty  king,  whose  head  was 
crowned  with  a  diadem  of  precious  jewels,  sparkling  with  a 
brightness  almost  divine,  who  held  flittering  sceptres  in 
bo&  his  hands,  the  rest  of  whose  body  was  robed  in  cloth 
of  gold,  whose  palate  was  gratified  by  such  delicious  and 
exquisite  viands,  whom  all  men  bowed  down  to,  all  men 
feared,  congratulated,  and  admired;  observe,  I  say,  what 
harrible  decay,  to  what  a  loathsome  state,  his  body  was 
reduced !  Mark  how  things  end,  from  which  only  a  true 
judgment  can  be  formed,  and  learn  to  despise  what  so 
perishes  and  comes  to  nothing!  At  last,  the  royal  remains 
were  brought  over  to  En^and,  and  interred,  within  twelve 
days  of  Christmas,  in  the  abbey  at  Beading,  which  King 
Henry  had  founded  and  richly  endowed.  There,  King 
Stephen,  after  holding  his  court  at  London  diiring  Christ- 
mas, came  to  meet  the  body  of  his  imcle,  and  William, 
archbishop  of  Xyanterbuiy,  with  many  earls  and  great  men, 
boned  King  Henry  with  the  honours  due  to  so  great  a 
prince. 

From  thence  the  king  went  to  Oxford,  where  he  recorded 
and  ratified  the  solemn  promises  which  he  had  made  to 
God  and  the  people,  and  to  holy  church,  on  the  day  of  his 
coronation^.  They  were  these : — First,  he  vowed  that  he 
wgnldjtieyerjpetainjLn^jiis  own  ESias  me  churcnes  of 
deceased  Dishops7  but^iJiwith  consenting  to  a  canonical^ 

TlPhia  sent^ce  is  dfflHted  ui'the  Royal  MS. ;  but  it  is  found  in  tfie 
Anmdel  MS.,  and  occurs  in  Boger  de  Wendorer. 

'  The  charter  is  given  in  William  of  Malmeshary's  Modem  History.  Sefr 
p.  493  of  the  translation  in  **  Bohn's  Antiquarian  Labrary." 

*  The  Boyal  MS.  omito  ''canonical" 


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264  HENBY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  TlH. 

election,  wotdd  invest  those  who  were  chosen.  Secondly, 
tfiat  he  would  not  lay  hands  on  the  woods  either  of  clerks 
or  laymen,  as  King  ileniy  had  done,  who  continually  im- 
pleaded those  who  took  venison  in  their  own  woods,  or 
felled  or  diminished  them  to  supply  their  own  wants. 
This  kind  of  pleading  was  carried  to  so  execrahle  a  lengthy 
that  if  the  king's  supervisors  set  eye  from  a  distance  on  a 
wood  belonging  to  any  one  whom  they  thought  to  be  a 
moneyed  man,  Qiey  forthwith  reported  that  there  was  waste, 
whether  it  was  so  or  not,  that  the  owner  might  have  to 
redeem  it,  though  the  charge  was  groundless.  Thirdly. 
tibe  king  nmry^ippH  thn.^.  ^e  Dane-gelt,  that  is  jwo  shillmgs — > 
for  a  hide  of  land,  wluch  ins  predecessors  had  received 
ypftrlyj  shnnld  Via  frivpn  ^^p  for  ever.  These  were  the  prin- 
cipal things  which,  among  others,  he  promised  in  the  pre- 
sence of  God ;  but  he  kept  none  of  them. 

Stephen,  coming  in  the  first  year  of  his  reign  to  Oxford, 
received  inteUigence  that  the  king  of  the  Scots,  pretending 
to  pay  him  a  friendly  visit,  had  marched  to  Carlisle,  and 
taken  Newcastle  by  stratagem.  The  king  replied  to  the 
messenger,  "  What  he  has  gained  by  stratagem  I  will  com- 
pel him  to  yield."  King  Stephen,  therefore,  immediately 
assembled  one  of  the  greatest  armies  levied  in  England 
within  the  memory  of  man,  and  led  it  against  King  Davids 
They  met  at  Durham,  where  the  king  of  the  Scots  came  to 
terms,  shrrendering  Newcastle,  but  retaining  Carlisle  by 
permission  of  Stephen;  and  King  David  did  not  do  ho- 
mage to  King  Stephen,  because  he  had  been  the  first  of 
all  the  laymen  to  swear  fealty  to  the  late  king's  daughter, 
who  was  his  own  niece,  acknowledging  her  queen  of  Eng- 
land after  her  father's  death.  But  Henry,  King  David's  son, 
did  homage  to  Stephen^  and  thatJ^ing  gave  mm  In  addition 
tBe*T:uwu  "[and  earldomj  of  Huntingdon.  King  StepheH 
returning  from  the  north,  held  his  court  during  Easter  at 
London,  in  a  more  splendid  manner  than  had  ever  been 
before  known,  both  for  the  number  of  attendants,  and  the 

'  Henry  of  Huntingdon  does  not  notice  an  expedition  of  Stephen's  against 
some  insurgents  in  the  neighbourhood  of  London  in  the  first  days  of  his 
reign,  nor  one  under  his  brother  Baldwin,  into  Wales,  where  disturbances 
arose  after  the  death  of  Henry  I. — Ste  the  Act*  of  King  Stephen, 


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A.D.  1136.]  SIEGE   OF  EXETEB.  265 

magnigcent  display  nf  goJd,  Rilyftrj  jftw^lc,  cofftily  rfthftfi,  fiTlj* 
eveiythm^  that  was  sumptuous.  At  Eogation  days  it  was 
reported  that  the  king  was  deaS^}  upuu  h«ai'ilig  wliliJh 
Hugh  Bigod  seized  Norwich  Castle,  nor  would  he  sur- 
render it  except  to  the  king  in  person,  and  then  very 
reluctantly.  Breach  of  fealty  and  treason  now  began  to 
spread  rapidly  among  the  Normans.  The  king  took  the 
castle  of  Bathenton^  which  belonged  to  one  Robert,  a  rebel. 
Then  he  laid  siege  to  Exeter,  which  was  shut  against  him 
byBaldwin  de  Rivers,  who  held  out  a  long  time,  till  the 
kmg  had  constructed  machines  for  the  assault,  and  expended 
much  treasure.  Then,  at  last,  the  castle  was  surrendered; 
but  being  ill  advised,  he  permitted  the  rebels  to  go  without 
punishment,  whereas  if  he  had  inflicted  it,  so  many  castles 
would  not  have  been  afterwards  held  against  him.  From 
thence  the  king  went  to  the  Isle  of  Wight,  which  he  took 
from  this  Baldwin  de  Rivers,  whom  he  banished  from  Eng- 
land^. Elated  by  these  successes,  the  king  went  to  hunt  at 
Brampton,  which  is  about  a  mile  distant  from  Huntingdon  ^ 
and  there  he  held  pleas  of  the  forests  with  his  barons,  that 
is,  concerning  their  woods  and  hunting,  in  violation  of  his 
promise  and  vow  to  God  and  the  people. 

In  the  second  year  of  his  reign,  King  Stephenuspfint 
Christmas  at  Dunstable,  and  in  Lent  he  sailed  over  to  Nor- 
mandy*.   Alexander,  bishop  of  Lincoln,  and  many  nobles 

'  Eoyal  MS.,  Bachentune  ;  Arandel  MS.,  Bakentune.  In  the  translation 
of  Boger  of  Wendover,  in  "John's  Antiquarian  Library,"  this  place  is 
named  "  Badington."  There  is  a  full  account  of  Bobert  the  Bebel  and  the 
siege  of  his  castle  of  "  Bathenton,"  in  the  **  Gesta  Stephani,"  in  a  subsequent 
part  of  the  present  volume.  Dr.  Sewell  calls  it  Bath.  That  city  certainly 
lay  in  Stephen's  road  to  Exeter,  and  one  of  its  suburbs  still  retains  a  similar 
name,  Bathampton :  but  it  is  to  be  observed  that  the  author  of  "  Gesta 
Stephani,"  who  subsequently  gives  a  particular  account  of  Bath,  and  of 
transactions  there,  invariably  calls  it  Batta,  and,  as  it  appears  to  me,  entirely 
disconnects  Robert  de  Bathenton  from  Bath. 

2  The  "  Acts  of  Stephen"  contains  a  circumstantial  account  of  the  siege 
of  Exeter  and  other  transactions  in  the  west  of  England. 

'  MS.  Arundel,  "  Branton."  We  probably  owe  this  local  reference  to 
Henry's  connection  with  Huntingdon. 

*  The  Saxon  Chronicle,  Malmesbury,  and  Roger  of  Wendover,  notice  this 
expedition  to  Normandy ;  but  there  is  no  account  of  it  in  the  "  Acts  of 
King  Stephen.'' 


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2dd  HENBT  OF  HXIKTIKGDON.  [BOOK  VIH. 

crossed  wi&  him.  There  the  king,  from  his  expmence  in 
war,  succeeded  in  all  he  undertook,  defeated  the  schemes 
of  his  enemies,  reduced  their  castles,  and  obtained  the 
highest  glory.  He  made  peace  with  the  king  of  the 
French,  to  whom  his  son  Eustace  did  hcmu^e  for  "Scat- 
mandy,  i^di  is  a  fief  of  the  French  crown.  The  Count 
of  Anjou  was  his  mortal  enemy,  for  he  had  married  King- 
Henry's  dangler,  who  had  be^  empress  of  Grermony,  and 
had  received  oaths  of  fealty  for  the  kingdom  of  England ; 
so  that  the  husband  and  wife  laid  claims  to  the  crown. 
But  seeing  that  at  present  he  could  not  make  head  against 
King  Stef&en,  on  account  of  his  nmnerous  forces,  and  of 
the  abimdanee  of  money  found  in  the  treasury  of  the  late 
king,  which  still  remained,  the  Count  of  Anjou  came  to 
terms  with  King  Stej^iai^.  Thus  successful,  the  king 
returned  to  England  in  trium^  on  the  yery  eve  of  Christ- 
mas. These  two  first  years  of  King  Stephen's  reign  were 
completely  prosperous ;  for  the  next  year,  of  which  I  have 
now  to  speak,  his  fortunes  were  moderate  and  j^iul ;  &xt 
the  two  last,  they  were  ruined  and  desperate. 

[a.d.  1138.]  King  Stephen  in  the  tlurd  year  of  his  reign, 
with  his  usual  activity,  flew  to  Bed£ord,  and,  sitting  down 
before  it  on  Christmas  eve,  pressed  the  siege  during  the 
whole  festival,  which  was  displeasing  to  God,  inasmuch 
as  it  made  that  holy  season  of  httle  or  no  account.  After 
the  surrender  of  Bedford,  King  Stephen  led  his  army  into 
Scotland,  for  King  David,  in  c(mseque^ce  of  the  oath  ^wdiich 
he  had  taken  to  King  Henry's  daughter,  and  under  colour 
of  religion,  caused  his  followers  to  deal  most  barbarously 
with  ihe  English.  They  ripped  open  pregnant  women, 
tossed  children  on  the  points  of  their  spears,  butchered 
priests  at  the  altars,  and,  cutting  off  the  heads  fi-om  the 
images  on  crucifixes,  placed  them  on  the  bodies  of  the 
slain,  while  in  exchange,  they  fixed  on  the  crucifixes  the 
heads  of  their  victims.  Wherever  the  Scots  came,  there 
was  the  same  scene  of  horror  and  cruelty ;  women  shriek- 
ing, old  men   lamenting,   amid  the  groans  of  the  dying 

'  Stephen  consented  to  pay  5000  marks  a  year  to  the  Count  of  Anjou ; 
agre^g  at  the  same  time  to  allow  2000  marks  annually  to  his  own  eldor 
brother  Theobald,  count  de  Blois. 


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AJ>.1138.]  THE  BABOlfS   BEYOLT.  d6T 

and  the  de^>air  of  the  living,  King  Stephen,  therefore, 
making  an  irruption  into  Scotland,  carried  fire  and  sword 
throu^  the  sou^^m  part  o£  the  dominions  of  King  David, 
who  was  miable  to  oppose  him.  After  Easter  the  treason 
of  the  English  nohles  burst  forth  with  great  fury.  Talbot, 
one  of  the  rebels,  held  Hereford  Castle  in  Wales  against  the 
king,  which,  however,  the  king  besieged  and  took  Bobert, 
the  earl  [of  Gloucester],  bastard  son  of  King  Henry,  main- 
tained himself  in  the  strongly  fortified  castle  of  Bristol, 
and  in  that  of  Leeds.  William  Lovell^  held  Castle-Cary; 
Planus  held  Ludlow  Castle ;  William  de  Mohnn^,  Dunster 
Castle ;  Bobert  de  Nichole,  Wareham  Castle ;  Eustace  Fitz- 
John  held  Melton;  and  William  Fitz-Alan,  Shrewsbury 
Castle;  which  last  the  king  stormed,  and  hung  some  of 
the  prisoners;  upon  hearing  which  Walkeline,  who  hdd 
Dover  Castle,  surrendered  it  to  the  queen,  who  was  besieging 
it.  While  the  king  was  thus  engaged  in  the  south,  David 
of  Scotland  led  an  immense  army  into  the  north  of 
England,  against  which  the  northern  nobles,  at  the  exhor- 
tation and  under  ^e  command  of  Thurstan,  archbishop  of 
Yoris:,  made  a  resolute  stand.  The  royal  standard  was 
planted  at  Alverton^,  and  as  the  archbishop  was  prevented 
by  illness  from  being  present  at  the  battle,  he  commissioned 
Balph,  bishop  of  Durham^,  to  fill  his  place,  who,  standing 
on  an  eminence  in  the  centre  of  the  army,  roused  their 
courage  with  words  to  this  effect : — 

"  Brave  nobles  of  England,  Normans  by  birth ;  for  it  is 
well  that  on  the  eve  of  battle  you  should  call  to  mind  who 
you  are,  and  fit)m  whom  you  are  sprung:  no  one  ever 
withstood  you  with  success.  Gallant  France  fell  beneath 
your  arms;   fertile  England  you  subdued;    rich  Apulia 

>  Arundel  MS.,  «  Ralph  Luv^"  »  "  Moion,'*  Arundel  MS. 

'  Allerton.  This  fiunoa»hattle  ef  the  Standard  is  also  fully  described  by 
Boger  of  Wendoyer.  See  also  William  of  Newbury  and  Trivet ;  but  the 
MS.  of  the  *'  Gesta  Stepfaaniy"  aifter  relating  the  irmption  into  Northmnb»- 
land,  becomes  imperfect  just  in  this  place. 

*  Both  the  MSS.  which  I  have  consulted  concur  with  Savile's  printed 
text  in  the  reading  of  **  OroitduBi ; "  but  as  Eoger  of  Wendorer  calls  Ralph 
Bishop  of  DurkaTH,  and  he  was  evidently  a  sufiragan  of  the  Archbishop  of 
Tork,  I  have  adopted  that  iMidmg.  Feihapt  the  biidiopi  of  Durham  had 
jurisdiction  in  the  Orkneys  1 


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268  HBNBY  OF  HUNTIMODOK.  [BOOK  YIU. 

flourished  again  under  your  auspices ;  Jerusalem,  renowned 
in  story,  and  the  noble  Antioch,  both  submitted  to  you. 
Now,  however,  Scotland  which  was  your  own  rightly,  has 
tak^i  you  at  disadvantage,  her  rashness  more  fitting  a 
skirmish  than  a  battle.  Her  people  have  neither  miUtary 
skill,  nor  order  in  fighting,  nor  self  command.  There  is, 
therefore,  no  reason  for  fear,  whatever  there  may  be  for 
indignation,  at  finding  those  whom  we  have  hitherto  sought 
and  conquered  in  their  own  country,  madly  reversing  the 
order,  making  an  irruption  into  ours.  But  that  which  I,  a 
bishop,  and  by  divine  permission,  standing  here  as  the 
representative  of  our  archbishop,  tell  you,  is  this:  that 
those  who  in  this  land  have  violated  the  temples  of  the 
Lord,  polluted  his  altars,  slain  his  priests,  and  spared 
neither  children  nor  women  with  child,  shall  on  this  same 
soil  receive  condign  punishment  for  their  crimes.  This 
most  just  fulfilment  of  his  will  God  shall  this  day  accom- 
phsh  by  our  hands.  Bouse  yourselves,  then,  gaUant  soldiers, 
and  bear  down  on  an  accrursed  enemy  with  the  coiu^e  of 
your  race,  and  in  the  presence  of  God.  Let  not  their 
impetuosity  shake  you,  since  the  many  tokens  of  our 
valour  do  not  deter  them.  They  do  not  cover  themselves 
with  armour^  in  war;  you  are  in  the  constant  practice  of 
arms  in  times  of  peace,  that  you  may  be  at  no  loss  in  the 
chances  of  the  day  of  battle.  Your  head  is  covered  with 
the  helmet,  your  breast  with  a  coat  of  mail,  your  legs  with 
greaves,  and  your  whole  body  with  the  shield.  Where  can 
file  enemy  strike  you  when  he  finds  you  sheathed  in  steel  ? 
"What  have  we  to  fear  in  attacking  the  naked,  bodies  of  men 
who  know  not  the  use  of  armour  ?  Is  it  their  numbers  ? 
It  is  not  so  much  the  multitude  of  a  host,  as  the  valour  of 
a  few,  which  is  decisive.  Numbers,  without  discipline,  are 
an  hindrance  to  success  in  the  attack,  and  to  retreat  in 
defeat.  Your^  ancestors  were  often  victorious  when  they 
were  but  a  few  against  many.    What,  then,  does  the  renown 

1  "  Nesciunt  annare  se ;  **  and  just  afterwards  the  historian  calls  them 
"nudos  et  inermes  !"  Not  that  they  went  to  battle  unarmed,  as  the  passage 
has  been  rendered,  but  the  rank  and  file  of  the  Scots  used  no  defensiye  ar- 
mour, and  perhaps,  like  their  posterity,  they  only  wore  the  kilt. 

«  Arundel  MS.,  "our." 


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A.D  1138.]      BATTLE  OP  THE  STANDABD.  269 

of  your  fathers,  your  practice  of  arms,  your  military  disci- 
pline avail,  unless  they  make  you,  few  though  you  are  in 
numbers,  invincible  against  the  enemy's  hosts?  But  I 
close  my  discourse,  as  I  perceive  them  rushing  on,  and  I  am 
delighted  to  see  that  they  are  advancing  in  disorder.  Now, 
then,  if  any  of  you  who  this  day  are  called  to  avenge  the 
atrocities  committed  in  the  houses  of  God,  against  the 
priests  of  the  Lord,  and  his  little  flock,  should  fall  in  the 
battle,  I,  in  the  name  of  your  archbishop,  absolve  them 
from  all  spot  of  sin,  in  the  name  of  the  Father,  whose  crea- 
tures the  foe  hath  foully  and  horribly  slain,  and  of  the  Son, 
whose  altars  they  have  defiled,  and  of  the  Holy  Ghost, 
from  whose  grace  they  have  desperately  fallen." 

Then  all  the  English  replied  witli  a  shout,  and  the 
mountains  and  hills  re-echoed,  "Amen!  Amen!"  At  the 
same  moment  the  Scots  raised  their  country's  war-cry, 
"Alban!  Alban!"  till  it  reached  the  clouds.  The  sounds 
were  drowned  amid  the  crash  of  arms.  In  the  first  onset 
the  men  of  Lothian,  to  whom  the  king  of  the  Scots  had 
reluctantly  granted  the  honour  of  striking  the  first  blow, 
bore  down  on  the  mailed  English  knights  with  a  cloud  of 
darts  and  their  long  spears,  but  they  found  their  ranks 
impenetrable  as  a  wall  of  steel ;  while  the  archers  mingled 
witti  the  knights,  pierced  the  unanhed  Scots  with  a  cloud 
of  arrows.  The  whole  army  of  English  and  Normans 
stood  fast  round  The  Standard  ^  in  one  solid  body.  Then 
the  chief  of  the  men  of  Lothian  fell,  pierced  by  an  arrow, 
and  all  his  followers  were  put  to  flight.  For  the  Almighty 
was  oflended  at  them,  and  their  strength  was  rent  like  a 
cobweb.  Perceiving  this,  the  main  body  of  the  Scots,  which 
was  fighting  bravely  in  another  quarter,  lost  courage,  and 
retreated  also.  King  David's  chosen  body  of  soldiers  also, 
which  he  had  selected  from  various  tribes,  when  they  saw 
this,  began  to  flee,  first  singly,  and  then  in  troops,  until  the 
king  stood  almost  alone ;  upon  which  his  friends  compelled 
him  to  mount  a  horse  and  escape.  But  his  brave  son, 
heedless  of  what  his  countrymen  were  doing,  and  inspired 
only  by  his  ardour  for  the  fight  and  for  glory,  made  a  fierce 

1  From  which  thia  battle  was  called  <'  The  Battle  of  the  Standard." 


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$T0  HSKBT  OF  HtmrtKaBov.  [book  TltZ. 

attack,  with  the  remnant  of  the  ftighives,  on  the  enemy's 
ranks.  The  hody  nnder  his  own  command,  composed  of 
English  and  Normans  attached  to  his  father's  household, 
had  retained  their  horses.  But  this  body  of  caTalry  cotdd  by 
no  means  make  any  impres^on  against  men  sheathed  in 
armomr,  and  fighting  on  foot  in  a  close  colinnn ;  so  titmt 
they  were  compelled  to  retire  with  womided  horses  and 
shattered^  lances,  after  a  brilliant  but  tinsuccessful  attack. 
It  is  reported  that  11,000  of  the  Sco*s  fell  on  the  field 
of  battle,  besides  liiose  who  were  found  in  the  woods 
and  corn-fields,  and  there  slain.  Om*  army  gained  this 
victory  with  very  little  eflFiision  of  blood.  Its  leaders  were 
William  Peperel,  of  Nottingham,  Walter  Espec,  and  Gilbert 
de  Lacy,  whose  brother  was  the  only  knight  slain.  When 
the  issue  of  the  battle  was  reported  to  King  StejAen,  he 
and  all  who  were  with  him  offered  solemn  ^banks  to 
Almighty  God.  It  was  fought  in  llie  month  of  August. 
During  Advent,  Alberic,  the  pope's  legate,  and  Bishop  of 
Ostia,  held  a  synod  at  London,  in  which  Hieobald,  al:Hfe)0t 
of  Bee,  was  made  Archbishop  of  Canterbuiy,  witii  the  con- 
currence of  King  Stej^n*. 

In  the  fourth  year  of  his  reign,  when  Christmas  was  past, 
King  Stephen  besieged  and  tpok  Leeds  Castle ;  after  which 
he  went  into  Scotland,  and  by  fire  and  sword  compelled 
the  king  of  the  Scots  to  come  to  terms,  and  brought  away 
to  England  his  son  Henry.  He  then  besieged  Ludlow, 
where  this  Henry  was  dragged  from  his  horse  by  an  iron 
hook,  and  nearly  taken  prisoner,  but  wm  gaHantly  rescued 
from  the  enemy  by  King  Stephen.  As  soon  as  the  castle 
surrendered'*  he  went  to  Oxford,  where  he  perpetrated  a 
deed  of  great  infamy  and  out  of  all  precedent.  For,  afler 
receiving  amicably  Roger,  bishop  of  Salisbury,  and  his 
nephew  Alexander,  bishop  of  Lincoln,  he  violently  arrested 
Hiem  in  his  own  palace,  tiiough  they  refused  nothing  which 
justice  demanded,  and  earnestly  appealed  to  it.     The  king 

*  Savile'a  text  has  "shortened,"  but  both  the  MSS.  collated  for  contractu 
read  confractU,  shattered. 

*  See  the  **  Acts  of  King  Stephen,"  for  a  long  account  of  transactioiui  in 
the  west  of  England  this  year,  not  even  referred  to  by  Huntingdon. 

^  Savile's  text  has  it,  '^  re  imperfects^"  but  bis  maiyinal  rea^ng  and  both 
the  MSS.  collated  have  *'  perfecta." 


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AJ).  1139.]         STEBHieN  IMPB1B0N8   THE  BISHOPS.  ^71 

j&rew  Bishop  Alexander  into  prison,  and  carried  the  Bishqp 
of  Salislftiiy  with  Mm  to  his  own  castle  of  Devizes,  one  of 
the  most  stately  in  all  Europe.  There  he  tormented  him 
by  starvation,  and  put  to  the  torture  his  son,  the  king's 
chancellor  \  who  had  a  rope  fastened  round  his  neck,  and 
was  led  to  the  gallows.  Thus  he  extorted  from  him  the 
surrender  of  his  castiie,  unmindful  of  the  services  whidi  the 
bishop  had  rendered  him,  more  than  all  others,  in  ibe 
beginning  of  his  reign.  Such  was  the  return  for  his  devo- 
tedness^.  In  a  similar  manner  he  obtained  possession  of 
Sherborne  Castle,  which  was  Utile  inferior  to  Deviises. 
Having  got  hold  of  the  bishop's  treasures,  he  used  them  to 
obtain  in  marriage  for  his  son  Eustace  the  hand  of  Con- 
stance, Lewis  the  French  king's  sister.  Betuming  thence, 
the  king  took  with  him  to  Newark,  Alexander,  bishop  of 
liincoln,  whom  he  had  before  thrown  into  prison  at  Oxford. 
The  bishop  had  built  at  Newark  a  castle  in  a  florid  style  of 
architecku^,  on  a  charming  site,  cunong  iJie  meadows 
washed  by  the  river  Trent.  Having  inspected  this  castle, 
-die  king  enjomed  the  bishop  a  £Eist  not  authorized  hy  the 
rubric,  swearing  that  he  should  be  deprived  of  food,  until 
lie  gave  up  his  right  to  the  castle.  But  Hie  bishop  had 
some  difficulty  in  persuading  his  garrison  with  prayers  and 
tears  to  deliver  it  into  the  custody  of  strangers.  Another 
of  his  castles,  called  Sleaford,  not  iniierior  in  beauty  and 
jsite,  was  surrendered  in  a  similar  manner.  Not  long  after- 
wards, wh^i  Henry,  bishop  of  Winchester,  the  king's 
brother  and  ,the  pope's  legate,  held  a  synod  at  Winchester, 
Theobald,  ar^bishc^  of  Canterbury,  and  all  the  bishops 
present,  join^  him  in  imploring  the  king  on  their  bended 
Icnees  to  restore  their  possessions  to  the  bishops  above 

*  **  Roger,  tfhe  Chancellor  of  England,  was  the  ton  of  Bc^r,  bishop  of 
Salisbury,  by  Maud  of  Eainsbury,  his  concubine." — Hardy. 

*  Compare  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  accowrt  of  the  long^s  proceedings 
against  the  bishops  with  that  given  by  Williara  of  Mahneslmry  in  his 
Modem  History,  p.  496,  Bohn's  Antiquarian  labrary;  and  with  that 
in  the  "  Acts  of  King  Stephen,*'  in  the  latter  part  of  the  present  votuine. 
Henry  of  Huntingdon  evidently  leans  to  the  side  of  his  patrons  the  bishops, 
while  the  view  of  the  kingfs  policy  by  the  anonymeto  author  of  the  *'  Gesta 
fitephani,"  though  an  ecclesiastic,  is  just  and  statesman-like,  whatever  mi^ 
be  thought  of  the  king's  harshness  and  breadi  of  faith.  Malmesbury  idso 
treats  the  subject  very  fairly. 


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27a  HENBY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [bOOK  VIH. 

named,  with  the  understanding  that  they  should  overlook 
the  indignities  to  which  they  had  heen  subjected.  But 
unmoved  by  the  supplications  of  such  an  august  assemblage, 
the  king,  following  evil  counsels,  refused  to  grant  their 
petitions  ^ 

This  prepared  the  way  for  the  eventual  ruin  of  the  house 
of  Stephen.  For  forthwith,  the  Empress  Maud,  the  daughter 
of  the  late  King  Henry,  who  had  received  tbe  fealty  of  the 
English,  came  over  to  England,  and  was  received  into 
Arundel  Castle^.  There  she  was  besieged  by  the  king, 
who,  listening  to  perfidious  counsel,  or  finding  the  castle 
too  strong  to  be  taken,  granted  her  a  safe  conduct  to 
go  to  Bristol.  The  same  year  died  Eoger^,  the  bishop  of 
whom  I  have  lately  spoken,  worn  out  by  trouble  and  weight 
of  years.  My  readers  may  well  marvel  at  his  sudden 
change  of  fortune.  For  from  his  youth  upwards  her 
favours  had  so  accumulated,  that  we  might  say  that  for 
once  she  had  forgotten  to  turn  her  wheel ;  nor  in  his  whole 
career  did  he  meet  with  any  adverse  events,  until  a  cloud 
of  miseries  gathered  about  him,  and  ovendielmed  him  at 
the  last.  Let  no  one,  then,  depend  on  the  continuance  of 
Fortune's  favours,  nor  presume  on  her  stability,  nor  think  that 
he  can  long  maintain  his  seat  erect  on  her  revolving  wheel. 

In  the  fifth  year  of  his  reign  King  Stephen  expelled  from 
his  see  Nigel,  bishop  of  Ely,  because  he  wa^  the  nephew 
of  the  late  bishop  of  Salisbury,  against  whom  he  was  so 
incensed  that  his  anger  extended  to  all  his  kindred.  Where 
the  king  spent  Christmas  and  Easter  it  matters  not;  for 
now  all  that  made  the  coin*t  splendid,  and  the  regalia 
handed  down  from  the  long  line  of  his  predecessors,  had 
disappeared.     The  treasury,  left  well  filled,  was  now  empty ; 

^  See  a  fall  account  of  the  proceedings  of  tliis  synod  in  Malmesbniy's 
"Modem  History." 

'  By  William  d' Anbeney,  husband  of  Queen  Alice^  who  had  in  dowry  firom 
the  late  King  Henry  the  castle  and  earldom  of  Anmdel.  See  the  *'  Acts  of 
King  Stephen  "  and  William  of  Malmesbury,  for  a  full  account  of  the  pro- 
gress of  the  Empress  and  her  brother  Bobert,  earl  of  Gloucester,  after  their 
airival. 

'  Roger,  bishop  of  Salisbury,  was  one  of  the  greatest  statesmen  and  mogt 
powerfid  prelates  of  his  time.  See  further  particulars  of  him  in  Hunting- 
don's Treatise,  "  De  Oontemptu  Mnndi,"  in  the  latter  part  of  the  present 
volume. 


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A.D.  1141.]  SIEGE   OF  LINCOLN.  273 

the  kingdom  was  a  prey  to  intestine  wars^;  slaughter,  fire, 
and  rapine  spread  ruin  throughout  the  land ;  cries  of  dis- 
tress, horror,  and  woe  rose  in  every  quarter.  The  state  of 
affairs  is  described  in  the  following  elegy : — 

"  Oh  !  for  a  fount  of  tears  to  flow. 
And  weep  my  country's  bitter  woe. 
Clouds  shroud  her  in  the  darkest  gloom. 
And  thicken  round  her  day  of  doom; 
Fated  intestine  wars  to  see, 
Fire,  fiiry,  blood,  and  cruelly. 
Bapine  stalks  boldly  through  the  land, 
Euthlessly  baring  the  strong  hand ; 
A  castle's  walls  are  no  defence 
Against  the  sons  of  violence; 
All  truth  is  fled ;  unblushing  fraud 
And  flaunting  treason  walk  abroad : 
Churches,  in  vain,  and  holy  ground 
Which  erst  religion  fenced  round. 
Open  their  gates  to  shelter  those 
Who  refuge  seek  from  bloody  foes. 
The  monks  and  nuns,  a  helpless  train. 
Are  plundered,  tortur'd,  ravish'd,  slain. 
Q&mxt  &mine,  following,  wastes  away 
Whom  murder  spares,  with  slow  decay. 
Who  for  the  dead  shall  find  a  grave  1 
Who  England's  hapless  children  save  1 
The  cup  of  mingled  woe  she  drains. 
All  hell 's  broke  loose,  and  chaos  reigns." 

[a.d.  1141.2]  jjj  ^g  sixth  year  of  his  reign,  during  the 
season  of  Christmas,  King  Stephen. laid  siege  to  Lincoln, 
the  defences  of  which  Eanulph,  earl  of  Chester,  had  fraudu- 
lently seized.  The  king  sat  down  before  it,  till  the  feast  of 
the  Purification  of  the  Blessed  Virgin  Mary  [Mother  of 
God.^]     Then  the  earl  aforesaid,  with  Eobert,  Kmg  Henry's 

*  The  *'  Acts  of  King  Stephen  "  largely  supply  details  of  the  movements 
which  Huntingdon  thus  briefly  notices,  particularly  those  in  the  west  of 
England. 

'  Boger  of  Wendover  notices  the  battle  of  Lincoln  under  the  year  1140. 
The  Saxon  Chronicle  under  the  date  of  that  year  describes  it  as  ''after- 
wards."  "Several  MSS.  of  William  of  Malmesbury,  as  well  as  the  printed 
copy,  read  1142  ;  but  one  has  1141,  which  is  right" — ^Note  to  the  "  Modem 
History,"  p.  513,  "  Bohn's  Antiquarian  Library."  The  date  in  Huntingdon, 
"  the  sixth  year  of  Stephen's  reign,"  agrees  with  this. 

*  "Mother  of  God,"  not  found  in  either  of  the  MSS.  collated. 

T 


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S74  HBNBT  OF  HUKTIlKHXlir.  [BOOK  YHI. 

son,  his  oim  faiher-mrlaw  ^  and  other  powerf liL  nobles,  aasem- 
bled  to  raise  the  siege.  The  same  day  tiie  earl,  boldly 
crossing  a  marsh  which  was  almost  impassablev  drew  up 
his  troops,  and  c^red  'the  king  battle.  He  himself  led 
the  first  line,  composed  of  his  own  retainers ;  the  second 
was. headed  by  tiie  nobles  eidled  by  King  Stephen; 
Eobert,  the  powerfiil  earl  [of  Gloucester],  commanded  the 
third.  The  Welsh,  ill  armed,  but  fidl  of  ^irits,  were  dis- 
posed on  the  wings  of  the  army.  And  now  the  Earl  of 
Chester,  a  man  of  great  prowess,  in  bright  armour,  thus 
addressed  Earl  Eobert  and  the  other  barons:  "Keceive 
my  hearty  thanks,  most  puissant  earl,  and  you,  my  noble  fel- 
low-soldiers, for  that  you  are  prepared  to  risk  yoiu*  hves  in 
testimony  of  your  devotion  to  me.  But  since  it  is  through 
me  you  are  called  to  encounter  this  peril,  it  is  fitting  that 
I  should  myself  bear  the  Ixnmt  of  it,  and  be  foremost  in 
the  attack  on  this  faithless  king,  who  has  broken  the  peace 
to  which  he  is  pledged.  While  I,  therefore,  animated  by 
my  own  valour,  and  the  remembrance  of  the  king's  perfidy, 
throw  myself  on  the  king's  troops,  and  hew  a  road  tiirough 
the  centre  of  his  anny,  it  will  be  your  part,  brave  soldiers, 
to  follow  up  my  success.  I  have  a  strong  presage  that  we 
shall  put  the  king's  troops  to  the  rout,  trample  under  foot 
his  nobles,  and  stnke  himself  with  the  sword."  When  he 
had  spoken.  Earl  Robert  thus  replied  to  the  young  earl, 
while,  standing  on  an  eminence,  he  spoke  to  this  effect: 
"  It  is  fitting  that  you  should  have  the  boaour  of  striking 
the  first  blow,  both  on  account  of  your  high  rank  and  your 
exceeding  valour.  If,  indeed,  it  were  a  question  of  rank 
only,  no  one  has  higher  pretensions  than  myself,  the  son 
and  nephew  of  mi^ty  kings ;  and  for  valour,  there  are 
many  here  who  stand  among  the  most  renowned,  to  whom 
no  man  living  can  be  preferred.  But  I  am  actuated  by 
considerations  of  a  very  different  kind.  The  king  has 
inhumanly  usurped  the  crown,  faithless  to  the  fealty  which 
he  swore  to  my  sister,  and  by  the  disorder  he  has  occa- 
sioned  has  caused  the  slaughter  of  many  thousands ;  and 

*  Arundel  MS.  "Bootram;**  t^  text  of  Savile  na^  "geneniin>"  soft*- 
in-law,  incorret^. 


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A»D.  1141.]         BATILB  OP  LINCOLN.  2')^5 

by  the  example  he  has  set  of  an  illegal  distributi<m  of  lands, 
has  destroyed  the  rights  of  property.     The  first  onset  ought, 
therefore,  to  be  made  by  those  he  has  disinherited,  with 
whom  the  Grod  of  justice  will  co-operate,  and  make  them 
the  ministers  of  his  just  punishment.     He  who  judgeth  the 
people  with  equity  wiU  look  down  from  his  habitation  in 
the  heavens  above,  and  will  not  desert  those  who  are  seeking 
for  justice,  in  this  their  hour  of  need.     There  is  one  thing, 
however,  brave  nobles  and  soldiers  all,  which  I  wish  to 
impress*  on  your  minds.     There  is  no  possibility  of  retreat 
over  the  marges  whicL  you  have  just  crossed  with  diffi- 
culty.    Here,  Hi^efore,  you  must  either  conquer  or  die; 
for  there  is  no  hope  of  safety  in  flight.     The  only  com^e 
that  remains  is,  to  open  a  way  to  the  city  with  your  swords. 
If  my  mind  conjectures  truly,  as  flee  you  cannot,  by  God's 
help  you  will  this  day  triumph.     Those  must  rely  wholly 
on  their  valour  who  have  no  other  refuge.    You,  victorious, 
will  see  the  citizens  of  Lincoln,  who  stand  in  array  nearest 
their  walls,  give  way  before  the  impetuosity  of  your  attack 
and,  with  faint  hearts,  seek  the  shelter  of  their  houses. 
Listen,  while  I  tell  you  with  whom  you  have  to  do.     There 
is  Alan,  earl  of  Brittany,  in  arms  against  us,  nay  against 
God  himself;  a  man  so  execrable,  so  polluted  with  every 
sort  of  wickedness,  that  his  equal  in  crime  cannot  be  found; 
who  never  lost  an  opportunity  of  doing  evil,  and  who  would 
think  it  his  deepest  disgrace,  if  any  one  else  covld  be  put 
in  comparison  with  him  for  cruelty.     Then,  we  have  op- 
posed to  us  the  Earl  of  Mellent,  cra%,  perfidious ;  whose 
heart  is  naturally  imbued  with  dishonesty,  his  tongue  with 
firaad,  his  bearing  with  cowardice.     Vain-glorious  in  tem- 
per and  boastful  in  words,  he  is  pusillanimous  in  deeds ; 
slow  in  advance,  quick  in  retreat,  the  last  in  fight,  the  first 
in  fli^t    Next,  we  have  against  us  Earl  Hu^^,  who  not 
only  makes  light  of  his  breach  of  fealty  s^ainst  the  empress, 
but  has  pei^ured  himself  most  patently  a  second  time; 
affirming  that  King  Henry  conferred  the  crown  on  Stephen, 
and  that  the  king's  daughter  abdicated  in  his  favour ;  and 
this  man  considers  fraud  to  be  a  virtue,  and  perjury  to  be 
admired.     Then  we  have  the  Earl  of  Albemarle,  a  man 

>  Hugh  Bigod^  earl  of  Norfi>lk. 

T  d 


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5i76  HENBY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  VUI. 

tsingularly  consistent  in  his  wicked  courses,  prompt  to  em- 
bark in  them,  incapable  of  relinquishing  them ;  from  whom 
his  wife  was  compelled  to  become  a  fugitive,  on  account  of 
his  intolerable  filthiness.  The  earl  also  marches  against 
us,  who  carried  off  the  coimtess  just  named;  a  most 
flagrant  adulterer,  and  a  most  eminent  bawd,  a  slave  to 
Bacchus,  but  no  friend  to  Mars ;  redolent  of  wine,  indolent 
in  war.  With  him  comes  Simon,  earl  of  Northampton, 
who  never  acts,  but  talks,  who  never  gives,  but  promises, 
who  thinks  that  when  he  has  said  a  thing  he  has  done  it, 
when  he  has  promised  he  has  performed.  [Hitherto  I  have 
said  nothing  of  that  runaway,  William  de  Ypres ;  for  words 
have  not  yet  been  found  to  describe  fitly  the  wiles  and 
crooked  paths  of  his  treasons,  and  the  disgusting  loath- 
someness of  his  impurities.]^  So  of  the  rest  of  Stephen's 
nobles :  they  are  like  their  king ;  practised  in  robbery, 
rapacious  for  plunder,  steeped  in  blood,  and  all  alike 
tainted  with  pequry.  You,  brave  nobles,  whom  the  late 
King  Henry  exalted,  this  Stephen  has  humbled;  whom 
the  one  raised,  the  other  ruined.  Eouse  yourselves,  and 
relying  on  your  valour,  nay  rather  on  God's  justice,  take 
the  vengeance  which  He  offers  you  on  these  iniquitous 
men,  and  gain  for  yourselves  and  yoiu:  posterity  immortal 
renown.  If  you  are  of  one  mind  in  executing  the  divine 
judgment,  swear  to  advance,  execrate  retreat,  and,  in  token 
of  it,  unanimously  raise  your  hands  to  heaven." 

The  earl  had  scarcely  finished  speaking,  when  the  whole 
army,  raising  their  hands  to  heaven,  abjiu-ed  flight  with 
tremendous  shouts,  and  closing  the  ranks,  marched  against 
the  enemy  in  excellent  order.  Meanwhile  King  Stephen, 
in  much  tribulation  of  mind,  heard  mass  celebrated  with 
great  devotion ;  but  as  he  placed  in  the  hands  of  Bishop 
Alexander  the  taper  of  wax,  the  usual  royal  offering^,  it 
broke,  betokening  the  rupture  of  the  kings.  The  pix  also, 
wliich  contained  Christ's  body,  snapt  its  fastening,  and  fell 
on  the  altar,  while  the  bishop  was  celebrating ;  a  sign  of 


1  The  sentence  witHn  the  brackets,  omitted  in  Sayile's  text,  is  inserted, 
from  the  Royal  MS. 

*  On  the  Feast  of  Purification,  when  the  blessing  of  candles  is  part  of 
the  office  of  the  Eoman  church. 


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A.D.  1141.]  BATTLE   OF  LINCOLN.  377 

the  king's  fall  from  power  ^  Nevertheless,  he  set  forth 
with  great  firmness,  and  drew  up  his  army  with  much 
caution.  He  took  post  himself  in  the  centre  of  the  men-at- 
arms,  a  numerous  body,  whom  he  caused  to  dismoimt,  and 
drew  up  in  the  closest  order.  His  earls  and  theur  knights 
retained  their  horses  and  formed,  by  his  order,  two  lines ; 
but  this  part  of  his  force  was  smaU.  For  his  false ^  and, 
factious  earls  had  few  retainers ;  but  the  king  s  own  followers 
were  very  nmnerous,  and  one  body  of  them  was  entrusted 
with  the  royal  standard.  Then,  as  King  Stephen's  voice 
was  not  clear,  Baldwin  Fitz-Gilbert,  a  man  of  the  highest 
rank,  and  a  brave  soldier,  was  deputed  to  address  a  word 
of  exhortation  to  the  assembled  army.  Placed  on  a  com- 
manding spot^,  where  the  eyes  of  all  were  directed  to  him, 
after  arresting  their  attention  by  a  short  and  modest  pause, 
he  thus  began : — 

"  All  ye  who  are  now  about  to  engage  in  battle  must 
consider  three  things:  first,  the  justice  of  your  cause; 
secondly,  the  number  of  your  force ;  and  thirdly,  its  bra- 
very :  the  justice  of  the  cause,  that  you  may  not  peril  your 
soids ;  the  number  of  your  force,  that  it  may  not  be  over- 
whelmed by  the  enemy ;  its  valour,  lest,  trusting  to  num- 
bers, cowardice  should  occasion  defeat.  The  justice  of 
your  cause  consists  in  this,  that  we  maintain,  at  the  peril 
of  our  lives,  our  allegiance  to  the  king,  before  God,  against 
those  of  his  subjects  who  are  perjured  to  him.  In  num- 
bers, we  are  not  inferior  in  cavalry,  stronger  in  infantry. 
As  to  the  valour  of  so  many  barons,  so  many  earls,  and  of 
our  soldiers  long  trained  to  war,  what  words  can  do  it 
justice  ?    Our  most  valiant  king  will  alone  stand  in  place 

'  William  of  Malmesbnry  does  not  notice  these  omens,  which^  how- 
ever^ we  find  mentioned  in  Roger  of  Wendover ;  and  the  breaking  of  the 
taper  in  "  Oesta  Stepham." 

^  Stephen  was  the  first  who  created  merely  titular  earls,  called  by  another 
old  writer  Fseudo-comites ;  the  earls  or  counts  having  hitherto  had  jurisdic- 
tion over  the  counties  from  which  they  took  their  titles,  and  from  which 
they  derived  certain  revenues. 

'  The  Royal  MS.  has  a  clever  pen  and  ink  drawing  at  the  foot  of  the 
page,  representing  Baldwin  leaning  on  his  sword,  and  standing  on  a  hillock 
in  the  act  of  addressing  a  group  of  knights  in  chain  armour,  at  the  head  of 
whom  King  Stephen  is  distinguished  by  a  royal  circlet  on  his  helmet,  and 
others  by  ^e  devices  on  their  shields. 


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^8  HENBT  OF  HTJNTIN(HX)N.  [BOOK  VIH. 

of  a  host  Your  sovereign,  the  anointed  of  the  Lord,  will 
be  in  the  midst  of  you;  to  him,  then,  to  whom  you  have 
sworn  fealty,  keep  your  «aths  in  the  sight  of  God,  persuaded 
that  He  wUl  grant  you  his  aid  according  as  you  fwthfully 
and  steadfastly  fight  for  your  king,  as  true  men  against 
the  perjured,  as  loyal  men  against  traitors.  Fearing  nothing, 
then,  and  filled  with  the  utmost  confidence,  learn  against 
whom  you  have  to  fight.  The  power  of  Earl  Robert  is 
well  known ;  but  it  is  his  custom  to  threaten  much  and  do 
little;  with  the  mouth  of  a  lion  and  the  heart  of  a  hare,  he 
is  loud  in  talk,  but  dull  in  action.  The  Earl  of  Chester  is 
a  man  of  reckless  audacity,  ready  for  a  plot,  not  to  be 
depended  on  in  canying  it  out,  rash  in  battle,  careless  of 
danger ;  with  designs  beyond  his  powers,  aiming  at  impos- 
sibilities; having  few  steady  followers,  but  collecting  a 
confused  multitude;  there  is  nothing  to  be  feared  from 
him.  None  of  his  undertakings  prosper;  he  is  either 
defeated  in  battle,  or,  if  by  any  chance  he  obtains  a  victory, 
his  losses  are  greater  than  those  of  the  conquered.  You 
may  despise  the  Welsh  he  has  brou^t  witii  him,  as  ill 
armed  and  recklessly  rash;  and  being  unskilled  and  un- 
practised in  the  art  of  war,  they  are  ready  to  fall  like  wild 
beasts  into  the  toils.  For  the  other  nobles  and  knights, 
ihey  are  traitors  and  turncoats,  [and  I  would  that  there 
were  more  of  them,  for]  ^  the  more  there  are  the  less  are 
they  to  be  feared.  Ye,  then,  earls,  and  men  having  preten- 
sions to  that  rank,  ought  to  be  mindful  of  your  valour  and 
renown.  Eaise  your  mihtary  virtues  this  day  to  the  highest 
pitch,  and,  following  the  examples  of  yoiu*  fathers,  leave  to 
your  children  undying  glory.  Let  the  determination  to 
conquer  be  your  incentive  to  fight,  while  the  certainty  of 
defeat  is  theirs  to  fly.  Already,  if  I  am  not  mists^en,  tiaey 
repent  of  their  coming,  and  their  thought  is  of  retreat,  if 
the  difficulties  of  their  position  permit  it.  Since,  then, 
they  can  neither  fight  nor  fly,  what  remains  but  that,  by 
God's  will,  they  surrender  themselves  and  their  baggage  to 
you  ?  Lift  up  tlien  your  hearts,  and  stretch  out  your  haads, 
soldiers,  exultingly,  to  take  the  prey  which  God  himself 
offers  to  you." 

*  The  words  within  the  brackets  are  omitted  in  the  Boyal  MS. 


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A.D.  1141.]         SING  ST3£PH£N  MADE  TfilSONEB.  d79 

Before  the  close  of  this  speech  the  shoots  of  the  advancing 
enemy  were  heard,  mingled  with  the  blasts  of  their  trum- 
\pets,  and  the  trampling  of  the  horses,  making  the  ground 
to  quake.  In  ihiQ  beginning  of  the  batde,  the  exiles  who 
■were  in  the  van  fell  on  the  royal  army,  in  which  were  Earl 
Alan,  the  Earl  of  MeUent,  with  Hugh,  the  earl  of  East 
Anglia  [Norfolk],  and  Earl  Symon,  and  the  Earl  <rf  Warrene, 
with  so  much  impetuosity,  that  it  was  routed  in  the  twink- 
ling of  an  eye,  one  part  being  slain,  anotiiiCT  taken  prisoners, 
and  the  third  put  to  flight  The  divi^oia  commanded  by 
the  Earl  of  Albemarle  and  William  de  Ypres,  charged  the 
Welsh  as  they  advanced  on  the  flank,  and  completely  routed 
them.  But  the  fc^lowers  of  i^e  Earl  of  Chester  attacked 
this  body  of  horse,  and  it  was  scattered  in  a  moment  like 
the  rest.  Thus  all  the  king's  horse  fled,  and  with  Ihem 
William  of  Ypre^  in  Handers,  who  had  raiiked  as  an  earl, 
*and  was  a  valiatit  soldier;  but,  as  an  experienced  general, 
perceiving  the  impossibility  of  supporting  the  lung,  he 
deferred  his  aid  lor  better  times.  King  St^hen,  therefore, 
with  his  infantry,  stood  alone  in  the  midst  of  i^e  aiemy. 
These  surrounded  the  royal  troops,  attacking  the  colunms 
on  all  sides,  as  if  they  were  assaulting  a  castle.  Then  the 
battle  raged  terribly  round  this  circle ;  helmets  and  sworis 
gleamed  as  they  clashed,  and  the  fearful  mes  and  shouts 
re-echoed  from  the  neighbouring  hills  and  the  city  walls. 
The  cavalry,  furiously  charging  the  royal  column,  slew  some 
and  trampled  down  others;  some  were  made  prisoners, 
l^o  respite,  no  breathing  time,  was  allowed,  excqst  in  the 
quarter  in  which  the  king  himself  had  taken  his  stand, 
where  the  assailants  recoiled  from  the  unmatched  force  of 
his  terrible  arm.  The  Earl  of  Chester  seeing  this,  and 
enVious  of  ^e  glory  the  king  was  gaining,  threw  himself 
upon  him  with  the  whole  weight  of  his  men-at-arms.  Even 
then  the  king's  courage  did  not  Ml,  but  his  heavy  battle-axe 
gleamed  hke  li^itmng,  striking  down  some,  bearing  back 
others.  At  len^  it  was  afeattered  by  repeated  bkjws ;  then 
he  drew  his  wefi-tried  sword,  with  which  he  wrought  won- 
ders, until  that,  too,  was  broken.  Perceiving  which,  William 
Dekains ',  a  heave  soldier,  rushed  on  him,  and,  seizing  him 
>  Be  Kidiakn^  V8S.  Boyaattid  AmdcL 


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280  HKNBY  OF  HUNTINODON.  [BOOK  VIII. 

by  his  helmet,  shouted,  "  Here,  here ;  I  have  taken  the 
king !"  Others  came  to  his  aid,  and  the  king  was  made 
prisoner.  Baldwin,  who  had  exhorted  the  troops,  was  aleo 
taken,  having  received  many  wounds,  and,  by  his  determined 
resistance,  gained  immortal  honour.  Richard  Fitz-Urse 
was  likewise  made  prisoner,  who  had  also  fought  manfully 
and  gained  great  glory.  Until  the  king  was  taken  his 
troops  continued  to  fight,  for  they  were  so  hemmed  in  that 
retreat  was  impossible.  All  were,  therefore,  slain  or  sur- 
rendered. The  city  was  given  up  to  plunder,  according  to 
the  laws  of  war,  the  king  having  been  conducted  to  it  in 
miserable  plight*. 

The  judgment  of  God  on  King  Stephen  having  thuh  been 
executed,  he  was  brought  before  the  empress,  and  com- 
mitted to  close  custody  in  Bristol  Castle.  The  whole 
EngUsh  nation  now  acknowledged  her  as  their  sovereign^, 
except  the  men  of  Kent,  who,  with  the  Queen  and  William 
de  Ypres,  made  all  the  resistance  in  ti|ieir  power.  The 
empress  was  first  recognised  by  the  Legate,  bishop  of  Win- 
chester, and  the  Londoners.  But  she  was  elated  with 
insufferable  pride  at  the  success  of  her  adherents  in  the 
unceiiain  vicissitudes  of  war,  so  that  she  alienated  fi:om 
her  the  hearts  of  most  men.  Therefore,  eitlier  by  some 
secret  conspiracy,  or  by  the  providence  of  God — indeed,  all 
human  affairs  are  directed  by  Providence — she  was  driven 
out  of  London.  Li  revenge,  with  a  woman's  fcittemess, 
she  caused  the  Lord's  anointed  to  be  bound  with  fetters  ^ 
After  some  time  she,  with  her  uncle  the  King  of  the  Scots, 

*  This  acconnt  of  the  battle  of  Lincoln  may  be  compared  with  William 
of  Malmesbury's,  at  p.  515  of  his  works  in  Bohn's  series,  and  with  the 
**  Gksta  Stephani "  in  the  sequel  of  the  present  Tolome.  Of  these  Heory  of 
Huntingdon's  is  the  fullest  and  most  exact. 

3  Henry  of  Huntingdon  passes  over  yery  briefly  the  eyents  connected 
with  the  short  period  during  which  the  Empress  Maud  was  acknowle^^ 
queen  of  England,  and  giyes  no  account  of  her  rupture  with  the  Legate- 
bishop  of  Winchester.  William  of  Malmesbury  gives  considerable  details; 
and  see  hereafter  further  particulars  in  the  "  Acts  of  King  Stephen." 

^  Malmesbury  relates  that  Stephen  was  at  first  treated  with  every  mark  of 
honour,  and,  through  the  kindness  of  his  relatiye  Robert,  earl  of  Gloucester, 
was  not  fettered — ^until,  by  bribing  or  eluding  his  keepers,  he  had  been 
found  beyond  the  appointed  limits,  especially  in  the  nigh^time. 


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A.D.  1141,  J  KING  STEPHEN   LIBERATED.  281 

and  her  brother  Eobert,  collecting  then*  forces,  sat  down 
and  besieged  the  castle  of  the  Bishop  of  Winchester  ^  The 
bishop  summoned  to  his  relief  the  queen,  and  William  ot 
Ypres,  and  ahnost  all  the  barons  of  England.  Large 
armies  were  therefore  assembled  on  both  sides ;  and  there 
were  daily  engagements,  not  indeed  regular  battles,  but 
desultory  skirmishes.  Li  such  encounters  valiant  deeds 
were  not  lost,  as  in  the  confusion  of  battle,  but  every  man's 
gaJlantry  was  seen  by  all,  and  he  gained  renown  according 
to  his  deserts.  This  interval  was  therefore  universally 
pleasing,  as  exhibiting  the  splendour  of  their  illustrious 
achievements.  At  length  the  arrival  of  the  Londoners  so 
increased  the  army  opposed  to  the  empress,  that  she  was 
compelled  to  retreat  ^.  Many  of  her  adherents  were  taken 
prisoners  in  their  flight ;  among  others  Kobert,  her  brother, 
in  whose  castle  the  king  was  imprisoned.  His  capture 
secured  the  king's  release,  by  a  mutual  exchange.  Thus 
the  king  who,  by  God's  judgment,  had  been  exposed  to  a 
painful  captivity,  was  by  God's  mercy  liberated;  and  the 
English  people  received  him  with  great  rejoicings. 

In  the  seventh  year  of  his  reign,  King  Stephen  built  a 
castle  at  Wilton,  but  the  enemy  assembled  in  numbers, 
and  the  royal  troops  not  being  able  to  repel  them  by  the 
sallies  they  made,  the  king  was  compelled  to  make  his 
escape.  Many  of  his  adherents  were  taken  prisoners,  among 
whom  was  William  Martel,  who  gave  up  for  Jiis  ransom  the 
strong  castle  of  Sherboum.  The  same  year  the  king 
besieged  the  empress  at  Oxford,  from  after  Michaelmas  till 
Advent.  At  the  end  of  which,  not  long  before  Christmas, 
the  empress  escaped  across  the  Thames,  which  was  then 
frozen  over,  and,  wrapped  in  a  white  cloak,  deceived  the 
eyes  of  the  besiegers,  dazzled  by  the  reflection  of  the  snow. 
She  got  into  the  castle  of  Wallingford,  and  Oxford  was , 
surrendered  to  the  king  ^. 

'  Savile's  text  reads  "  London/'  but  both  tbe  MSS.  now  collated  baye 
"Winchester." 

*  See  a  very  circumstantial  account  of  the  siege  of  Winchester  Castle, 
and  the  rout  of  the  empress's  army,  in  the  '*  Acts  of  King  Stephen  "  in  the 
present  volume. 

'  There  is  an  interesting  account  of  the  escape  of  the  empress  in  the 
**  Acts  of  King  Stephen." 


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882  HENBY  OP  HUHTINOI»K.  [BOOK  YlU. 

In  the  eighth  year  of  las  reign,  King  Stephen  was  preseat 
at  a  synod  in  London  in  Mid-Ijent,  wludi  was  held  there  by 
the  Legate-bishop  of  Wincdiester,  on  account  of  the  -extre- 
mities to  which  the  dergy  were  reduced.  For  no  reject 
was  paid  to  them  or  to  Ghod's  holy  Church  by  maraud^s, 
and  the  clei^  were  made  prisoners,  and  submitted  to 
ransom  just  as  if  th^  were  laymen.  The  ^laod  Iherefeve 
decreed  that  no  one  who  laid  '^oknt  hands  on  a  cleik 
fihould  be  absolved,  except  by  the  pqpe  himself  in  p««an. 
This  decree  obtained  for  them  some  reKef. 

The  same  year  the  king  arrested  Godfrey  de  Mande- 
ville,  in  his  court  at  *St.  Alban*s,  an  act  more  fitting  1iie 
earl's  deserts  Ihan  public  right,  more  expedient  than  just. 
But  if  he  had  not  taken  this  st^,  the  king  would  hare  be^i 
driven  from  the  throne.  To  obtain  his  liberty  he  surren- 
dered the  Tower  of  London,  and  the  castle  of  Walden, 
with  that  of  Ressis.  The  eari,  thus  stripped  of  his  pos- 
sessions, seized  the  Abbey  of  Bamsey,  and,  expelling  the 
monks,  garrisoned  it  with  retainers,  turning  the  house  of 
God  into  a  den  of  thieves.  He  was  a  man,  indeed,  of  great 
determination,  but  resolute  in  ungodliness;  diligent  in 
worldly  afl&iirs,  but  negligent  in  spiritual.  The  same  year, 
before  Giristmas,  the  Bishop  of  Winchester,  and  after- 
wards the  Archbishop  of  Canteri}ury,  w^it  to  Eome  on  the 
aflFah"  of  the  appointment  of  the  legate.  Pope  Innocent 
was  then  dead,  and  was  succeeded  by  Oelestine. 

King  Stephen  in  the  ninth  year  of  his  reign  laid  siege  to 
Lincottt.  While  he  was  preparing  a  work  for  the  attack  of 
the  castle,  which  the  Earl  of  Chester  had  taken  possession 
of  by  force,  eighty  of  his  woifanen  were  suffocated  in  the 
trenches,  whereupon  the  king  broke  up  the  siege  in  con- 
fusion. The  same  year  Godfrey,  earl  erf  Mandeville,  gave 
the  king  mudh  trouble,  and  distinguished  himself  more 
than  others.  Li  the  month  of  August,  Providence  displayed 
its  justice  in  a  remarkable  manner ;  for  two  of  the  nobles 
who  had  converted  monasteries  into  fortifications,  expelling 
the  monks,  their  sin  being  the  same,  met  with  a  similar 
pimishment.  Robert  Marmion  was  one,  who  had  com- 
mitted this  iniquity  in  the  church  of  Coventry ;  Godfrey  de 
Mandeville  had  peipetrated  the  same,  bs  I  have  said  be- 
fore, in  Ramsey  Abbey.     Robert  Marmion  issuing  %iih 


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A.D.  1143.]  COYENTKT  ABBEY  C-AflTELLATED.  y^SS 

agdnst  the  enemy  was  skin  under  the  walls  of  the  mcaaas- 
teiy,  bemg  the  only  one  idio  fell,  though  he  was  surrounded 
by  his  troops.  Dying  excommunicated,  he  became  subject 
to  deatii  everlasting.  In  like  manner  Earl  Oodfrey  was 
singled  out  among  his  followers,  and  shot  with  an  arrow  by 
a  common  foot  soldier.  He  made  light  of  the  wound,  but 
he  died  of  it  in  a  few  days,  under  excommunication.  See 
here  the  like  just  judgment  of  God,  memorable  through  all 
ages!  While  that  abbey  was  conrerted  into  a  fortress, 
blood  exuded  fiwm  the  walls  of  the  church  and  the  cloister 
adjoining,  witnessing  the  divine  indignation,  and  prognosti- 
cating the  destruction  of  the  impious.  This  was  seen  by 
many  persons,  and  I  observed  it  with  my  own  eyes.  How 
then  can  the  wicked  say  that  the  Almighty  sleeps?  He 
woke  indeed  in  this  sign,  and  that  whidi  it  signified. 
Moreover,  the  same  year  Amulf,  the  earl's  son,  who  after 
his  father's  deatb  continued  in  possession  of  the  fortified 
abbey,  was  taken  prisoner  and  banished,  ajid  the  leader  of 
his  horsemen  being  thrown  from  his  horse  at  hi&  inn,  died 
of  a  concussion  of  the  brain.  The  commander  of  his  foot 
soldiers,  Keiner  by  name,  who  was  employed  in  breaking 
open  and  binning  churches,  was  crossing  tbe  sea  with  his 
wife,  when,  as  many  relate,  the  ship  stock  fest.  The  sailors, 
in  amazement,  cast  lots  to  discover  the  cause  of  the  strange 
occurrence,  and  the  lot  fell  upon  Seiner.  He,  however, 
vehemently  resisting  the  decision,  the  lot  was  again  cast, 
and  a  second  and  third  time  it  fell  to  him.  He  was  there- 
fore put  in  a  boat,  with  his  wife  and  tiie  money  he  had 
iniquitously  amassed,  upon  which  the  ship  resumed  its 
course  rapidly,  ploughmg  tbe  wares  as  it  Jiad  done  before ; 
but  the  boat  with  its  ungodly  burthen  was  quiddy  swatl- 
lowed  up  and  for  ever  lost  The  same  year  Ludns  was 
elected  pope  in  the  place  of  Celestine  deceased. 

In  the  tenth  year  of  King  Stej^en,  Hugh  Bigod  was  the 
first  to  make  a  movement ;  but  in  the  summer  £ad  Bobert 
and  the  ijdiole  body  of  the  king's  enemies  set  to  wcwk  to 
build  a  castle  at  Faringdon.  The  king  lost  no  time  in 
collecting  troops  and  marching  there  at  the  head  of  a 
numerous  and  formidable  body  of  Londoners-  After  daily 
assaults  on  the  castle,  while  Earl  Bobert  and  his  adherents 
were,  with  great  resolution,  waiting  for  firesh  forces  not  fer 


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284  HENBT  OP  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  VOI. 

from  the  king's  anny,  the  castle  was  taken  with  much 
slaughter.  At  this  time  the  king's  fortune  hegan  to  change 
for  &e  better^.  The  same  year  Alexander,  bishop  of  Lin- 
coln, went  to  Rome,  where  he  exhibited  the  same  munifi- 
cence which  he  had  done  before.  He  was  therefore  honour- 
ably entertained  by  Pope  Eugenius,  who  was  recently 
elevated  to  his  high  dignity.  The  bishop's  disposition 
was  at  all  times  courteous,  his  discretion  dways  just,  his 
coimtenance  good-humoured  and  cheerful.  On  his  return 
the  following  year,  in  high  favour  with  the  pope  and 
his  whole  court,  he  was  received  by  his  people  with 
great  reverence  and  joy.  His  church  at  Lincoln,  which 
had  been  disfigured  by  a  fire,  he  restored  in  so  exquisite  a 
style  of  architectiure,  that  it  appeared  more  beautiful  than 
when  it  was  first  built,  and  was  surpassed  by  none  in  all 
England. 

King  Stephen  in  the  eleventh  year  of  his  reign  assem- 

I  bling  a  great  army,  built  an  impregnable  castle  at  Walling- 

Iford,  where  Eanulph,  earl  of  Chester,  who  had  now  joined 

I  the  royal  side,  was  present  with  a  large  force.    Afterwards, 

[however,  when  the  earl  came  peaceabty  to  attend  the  king's 

I  court  at  Northampton,  fearing  nothing  of  the  sort,  he  was 

arrested  and  kept  prisoner,  till  he  gave  up  the  strong  castle 

of  Lincoln,  which  he  had  seized  by  a  stratagem,  as  well  as 

afit.the  other  castles  which  belonged  to  him.     Then  the 

ead  was  set  free  to  go  where  he  pleased. 

In  the  twelfth  year  of  King  Stephen,  he  wore  his  crown 
during  Christmas  at  Lincoln,  which  no  king,  from  some 
superstitious  feeling,  had  before  ventured  to  do.  This 
showed  the  great  resolution  of  Kmg  Stephen,  and  how 
little  importance  he  attached  to  such  superstitions.-  After 
the  king's  departure,  the  Earl  of  Chester  came  to  Lincoln 
with  an  armed  force  to  assault  the  castle ;  but  the  chief 
commander  of  his  troops,  a  man  of  great  courage  and 
fortune,  was  slain  at  the  entrance  of  the  north  gate  of  the 
town,  and  the  earl  himself,  having  lost  many  of  his  followers, 

'  The  powerful  Earl  of  Chester  came  oyer  to  the  king's  side  for  a  time, 
and  great  consternation  prevailed  among  the  adherents  of  the  empress. 
This  probably  led  to  a  meeting  which  now  took  place  between  her  and  Ste- 
phen ;  but  the  treaty  for  a  reconciliation  was  firuitless.  See  the  **  Acts  of 
king  Stephen.'' 


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A  J).  1147.]  THE   CBDSADB  FAILS.  286 

was  compelled  to  retreat ;  upon  which  the  citizens,  rejoicing 
in  their  successful  defence,  offered  signal  thanks  to  the 
most  hlessed  Virgin,  their  patron  and  protectress.  At 
"Whitsuntide  Lewis,  king  of  France,  and  Theodorie,  earl  of 
Flanders,  and  the  Count  de  St.  Egidius,  with  an  immense 
multitude  from  every  part  of  France,  and  numbers  of 
the  EngUsh,  assmned  the  cross  and  joiurneyed  to  Jerusalem, 
intending  to  expel  the  Infidels  who  had  taken  the  city  of 
Rohen.  A  still  greater  number  accompanied  Com'ad, 
emperor  of  Germany ;  and  both  armies  passed  through  the 
territories  of  the  Emperor  of  Constantinople,  who  afterwards 
betrayed  them.  In  iJie  month  of  August,  Alexander,  bishop 
of  Lincoln,  proceeded  to  Auxerre  to  meet  Pope  Eugenius, 
who,  after  some  stay  at  Paris,  was  residing  there.  He 
was  honourably  entertained  by  the  pope,  but  from  the 
extraordinary  heat  of  the  weather  the  seeds  of  a  low  fever 
were  sown  in  his  constitution,  and  he  brought  it  with  him 
to  England.  Shortly  afterwards  he  fell  into  a  state  of 
infirmity  and  languor,  which  ended  in  death. 

Alexander,  bishop  of  Lincoln,  died  in  the  thirteenth  year 
of  King  Stephen's  reign,  and  was  buried  at  Lincoln  towards 
the  end  of  Lent.  Of  the  character  of  this  prelate,  following 
the  example  of  Moses,  I  will  say  nothing  that  is  not  true. 
Nurtured  in  great  affluence  by  his  uncle  Robert,  bishop  of 
Salisbiuy,  he  contracted  habits  which  were  beyond  his 
means.  Rivalling,  therefore,  other  men  of  rank  in  his  mu- 
nificence and  the  splendour  of  his  appointments,  his  own 
incomings  being  inadequate  to  his  expenditure,  he  care- 
ftilly  drew  from  his  friends  the  means  by  which,  comparing 
his  wants  with  the  superfluity  in  which  he  was  bred,  the 
deficiency  might  be  supplied.  But  this  was  out  of  the 
power  of  one  who  the  more  he  had  the  more  he  gave.  He 
was  at  the  same  time  a  man  of  prudence,  though  so  gene- 
rous, that  in  the  court  of  Rome  he  was  smuamed  the 
Magnificent^. 

The  same  year  the  armies  of  the  Emperor  of  Germany 
and  the  King  of  France  were  annihilated,  though  they  were 
led  by  illustrious  commanders,  and  had  commenced  their 

*  Our  author  dedicated  his  History  to  this  bishop.  Some  account  of  him 
is  given  in  a  note  appended  to  Huntingdon's  PreBeice  to  the  History. 


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286  HENRI  OF  HUNTIHGDON.  [BOOK  VHI. 

mai>ch  in  the  proodost  confidence.  But  God  desjHsed 
them,  and  their  incontinence  came  up  before  Him ;  for 
they  abandoned  thems^ves  to  open  fearoieation.  and  to 
adulteries  hateful  to  €rod,  and  to  robb^y  and  every  sort  of 
wickedness.  First  they  were  wasted  by  famine,  through 
the  false  conduct  of  the  Emperor  of  Constantinople  ;  and 
afterwards  they  were  destroyed  by  the  enemy's  sword.  The 
king  and  the  emperor  took  re&ge  at  Antioch,  and  after- 
wards at  Jerusalem,  with  the  remnant  of  their  followers ; 
and  the  King  of  France,  wishing  to  do  something  to  restore 
his  character,  laid  siege  to  Damascus,  having  the  assistance 
of  the  Knights  Templars  oi  Jerusalem,  and  a  force  collected 
from  all  quarters.  But  wanting  the  favour  of  God,  and 
therefore  having  no  success,  he  returned  to  France.  Mean- 
while a  naval  armament,  containing  no  men  of  rank,  and 
trusting  in  no  leader  of  renown,  but  in  God  only,  beginning 
humbly,  prospered  greatly.  For  though  few  in  number, 
and  opposed  by  a  numerous  force,  God.  being  their  helper, 
they  reduced  to  subjection  the  city  of  Lisbon  in  Spain, 
with  another  place  ciiled  Almeria,  and  aU  the  neighbouring 
country.  Thus  truly  "  God  resisteth  the  proud,  and  givetk 
grace  to  the  humble."  For  the  army  of  the  King  of  France 
and  the  Emperor  of  Germany  was  more  numerous  and 
splendid  than  that  which  had  formerly  besieged  and  taken 
Jerusalem ;  but,  notwithstanding,  it  was  crushed  by  inferior 
numbers,  and  destroyed .  and  disappesured  like  a  spider's 
web.  But  the  humble  expedition  of  which  I  have  just 
spoken  ovOTcame.  aR  who  opposed  it,  however  great  their 
multitude.  The  largest  part  of  it  was  supplied  from 
England. 

The  same  year,  at  the  approach  of  Christmas,  Robert^ 
sumamed  De  Querceto^,  the  young  archdeacon  of  Leices- 
ter, a  man  worthy  of  all  praise,  was  chosen  bishop  of  Lin- 
coln. He  was  esteemed  by  aU  men  worthy  of  this  great 
dignity,  and  the  king,  the  clergy,  and  the  people  joyfully 
assenting,  he  was  consecrated  by  the  Archbishop  of  Canter- 
bury. Anxiously  expected,  his  arrival  at  Lincoln  was  wel- 
comed [on  our  Lord's  Epiphany]  ^  by  the  clergy  and  people^ 
with  great  reverence   and  rejoicings.     May  God  prosper 

1  Called  also  "  Be  Cfaakney^." 

^  The  wordt  trithm  brackets  azdn  tbe  Baynl  MS;  only* 


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AO).  1148.]      HENBY  (il)  AMD   EUSTACE  KNIGHTED.  2&7 

him  in  these  evil  times,  and  cheer  his  youth  with  the  dew 
of  wisdom,  and  make  his  face  to  shine  with  holy  joy  ^ ! 

In  the  fourteenth  year  of  King  Stephen's  reign  David, 
king  of  Scots,  knifed,  his  nephew  Henry.  As  during  this 
sdenmity  a  Ifoge  force  was  aasemhled,  David  being  nume- 
rously attended,  and  his  nephew  having  in  his  retinue  the 
nobles  of  the  west  of  England,  King  Stephen  was  alarmed 
lest  they  should  proceed  to  attack  York;  he  therefore 
estabhshed  himself  in  that  city  with  a  large  army,  and 
remained  there  all  the  month  of  August  Meanwhile 
Stephen's  son  Eusteoe,  who  was  also  Imighted  the  same 
year,  made  an  irruption  into  ihe  territories  of  the  barons 
who  were  in  attendance  on  Henry,  the  empress's  son,  and, 
as  there  was  no  one  to  oppose  him,  he  laid  them  waste 
with  fire  and  sword.  But  the  kings  of  England  and  Scot- 
land, the  one  at  York,  the  other  at  Cachsle,  fearing  a 
rupture,  mutually  avoided  meeting,  and  thus  separated 
peaceably,  each  to  his  home. 

King  Stephen,  in  the  fifteenth  year  of  his  reign,  collecting 
troops,  made  a  brilliant  assault  on  the  city  of  Worcester, 
and,  having  taken  it,  committed  it  to  the  flames ;  but  he 
was  imable  to  reduce  the  castle  which  overlooked  the  city. 
It  belonged  to  Waleran,  earl  of  Mellent,  to  whom  King 
Stephen  had  granted  it  much  to  his  own  disadvantage. 
The  royal  army,  hanging  plundered  the  city,  overran  &e 
territories  of  the  hostile  lords,  an|i,  no  one  resisting  them, 
carried  off  an  immense  booty. 

In  the  sixteenth  year  of  the  king's  reign,  Theobald,  arch- 
bishop of  Canterbury  and  legate  apostolical,  held  a  general 
synod  at  London,  in  the  middle  of  Lent,  at  which  were 
present  King  Stephen,  with  his  son  Eustace,  and  the  great 
men  of  England.  Its  jMroceedings  were  disturbed  by  new 
appeals,  loudly  preferred.  They  were  not  in  use  in  Eng- 
land until  Henry,  bishop  of  Winchester,  while  he  was 
legate,  m^cilessly  introduced  them,  as  it  turned  out  to  his 

*  This  bishop  of  Lincoln,  of  whom  the  Archdeacon,  now  an  old  man, 
speaks  so  affectionately,  was  the  third  he  had  been  contemporary  with  in 
that  see.  Here  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  History  ooncludefr  in  the  Arundel 
MS.,  and  there  is  the-  fbllowing  note  in  the  Royal  MS. :  **■  Many  copies  have' 
no  more;"  We  may  condade,  therefore^  thai  what  fallows  is  a  continuation 
afterwards  added  to  the  trork,  and  whieh  did  not  find  it»  way  into  the 
eariier  copies. 


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a88  HENRY  OP  HUKTINGDON.  [BOOK  VOT. 

own  injury.  In  the  present  synod  there  were  three  appeals 
to  the  judgment  of  the  Roman  pontiff.  The  same  year. 
King  Stephen  again  attacked  Worcester^;  and,  having  been 
unable  to  reduce  the  castle  the  year  before,  he  now  assaulted 
it  with  the  utmost  determination.  The  garrison  making 
an  obstinate  resistance,  he  constructed  two  forts  to  cover 
the  attack,  and  leaving  some  of  his  nobles  there  he  himself 
departed.  But  it  was  the  king's  habit  to  undertake  many 
projects  with  zeal,  but  to  pursue  them  indolently;  and 
now  by  the  management  of  the  Earl  of  Leicester,  who  was 
brother  of  the  Earl  of  Mellent,  the  two  forts  erected  by  the 
king  were  demolished,  and  the  siege  was  skilftdly  raised : 
thus  the  king's  project  failed,  and  his  labour  was  lost. 
The  same  year,  itie  Earl  of  Anjou,  brother-in-law  of  the 
late  King  Henry,  and  son  of  the  King  of  Jerusalem,  a  man 
of  great  eminence,  ended  his  days.  He  left  to  Henry,  his 
eldest  son,  Anjou  and  Normandy,  together  with  the  here- 
ditary right  to  the  kingdom  of  England,  which  he  had 
never  reduced  to  possession.  It  now  happened  also  that 
Lewis,  king  of  France,  was  divorced  from  his  wife,  the 
daughter  of  the  Earl  of  Poitou,  by  reason  of  alleged  con- 
sanguinity. Henry,  therefore,  the  young  duke  of  Nor- 
mandy, married  her,  and  with  her  obtained  the  county  of 
Poitou,  a  great  accession  to  his  honours  and  .power.  But 
the  marriage  caused  great  dissensions,  fomented  into  hatred, 
between  the  King  of  France  and  the  duke. 

Upon  this,  Eustace,  King  Stephen's  son,  with  the  King 
of  France,  made  formidable  attacks  on  Nprmandy,  while 
the  duke  obstinately  resisted  both  of  them,  and  the  whole 
strength  of  the  French  army.  However,  the  king,  collect>- 
ing  all  his  large  forces,  assaulted  an  almost  impregnable 
castle  called  Neuf-Marche,  which  he  took  and  gave  up^  to 
Eustace,  son  of  the  King  of  England,  who  had  married  his 
sister. 

King  Stephen,  in  his  seventeenth  year,  wished^  to  have 
his  son  Eustace  crowned*,  and  he  required  Theobald,  arch- 

*  The  text  of  Savile  reads  "  Wincheater ; "  but  it  is  clearly  an  error,  inde- 
pendently of  the  authority  of  the  Eoyal  MS.,  which  has  **  Worcester." 

.«  Savile,  reddidit ;  Eoyal  MS.,  tradidit.      *  Eoyal  MS.,  "proposed." 

*  Eustace  died  the  following  year. — Roger  de  Wendover,  The  anony- 
mous author  of  ''  The  Acts  of  King  Stephen"  speaks  highly  of  his  character. 


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A.D.  1152.]    HENRT  [n.]  LANDS  IN  ENGLAND.  289 

bishop  of  Canterbmy,  and  the  other  bishops  whom  he  had 
assembled  with  that  design,  to  anoint  him  king,  and  give 
him  their  solemn  benediction ;  but  he  met  with  a  repulse, 
for  the  pope  had  by  his  letters  prohibited  the  archbishop 
from  crowning  the  king's  son,  because  King  Stephen 
appeared  to  have  broken  his  oath  of  fealty  in  mounting 
the  throne.  Upon  this,  both  father  and  son,  greatly  disap- 
pointed and  incensed,  ordered  the  bishops  to  be  shut  up 
together,  and  by  threats  and  hardships  endeavoured  to 
compel  them  to  comply  with  their  demand.  But  although 
they  were  very  much  alarmed,  for  Stephen  never  much 
liked  the  bishops,  and  had  some  time  before  imprisoned 
two  of  them\  tiiey  remained  firm  in  spite  ^  of  the  danger 
they  incurred.  However,  they  escaped  imhurt  in  their 
persons,  though  they  were  deprived  of  their  possessions, 
which  the  king  afterwards  penitentially  restored.  The 
same  year,  the  king  besieged  and  reduced  the  castle  of 
Newbiuy,  not  far  from  Winchester.  He  then  laid  siege  to 
the  castle  of  Wallingford,  building  a  fort,  to  beleaguer  it, 
on  the  bridge  at  the  entrance,  which  prevented  all  ingress, 
so  that  provisions  could  not  be  introduced.  Beginning  to 
feel  the  pressure,  they  petitioned  their  lord  the  Duke  of 
Normandy  that  he  would  either  send  them  relief,  or  that 
they  might  have  licence  to  surrender  the  castle  into  the 
king's  hands. 

In  the  eighteenth  year  of  King  Stephen,  the  Duke  of 
Normandy,  impelled  by  the  necessity  of  the  case,  made  a 
sudden  descent  on  England.  That  wretched  country,  be- 
fore reduced  to  ruin,  but  now  regaining  new  life  by  the 
prospect  of  his  coming  to  her  assistance,  may  be  supposed 
to  address  him,  weeping,  in  such  language  as  this : — 

Heir  to  thy  grandslre's  name  and  high  renown. 
Thy  England  calls  thee,  Henry,  to  her  throne : 
Now,  Men  from  her  once  imperial  state, 
Exhausted,  helpless,  mined,  desolate. 
She  sighs  her  griefs,  and  fainting  scarcely  liyea: 
One  solitary  hope  alone  survives. 

*  See  before,  p.  270. 

'  The  rending  in  the  margin  of  Savile*s  text,  confirmed  by  the  Royal  MS., 
IS  here  followed.  The  word  "  nihil,"  omitted  in  the  printed  text,  gives  it 
a  different  turn. 

U 


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290  HENRY  OF  HUHTINGDON.  .   [BOOK  Till.  ^ 

She  tnrnt  to  thee  her  dim  and  leeble  eye, 

Bat  scarce  can  raiae  the  suppliant's  plaintive  cry ; 

**  Save  me,  oh  save  me  I  Henry  ;  or  I  die  : 

Come,  saviour,  to  thy  own  ;  by  right  divine  < ' 

Fair  England's  royal  diadem  is  thme."  .1, 

What  dawning  light  bursts  tlurangh  the  loiid  ^looml 

Wlwt  echoing  shout  resounds, ''  I  oom^^  I  come  )  " 

Who  stands  on  Normandy's  wave-beaten  stcaad, 

List'ning  to  voices  from  his  fathers'  land? 

*T  is  he,  the  duke,  the  flower  of  chivalry. 

His  mien  commanding,  lightning  in  his  eye ; 

Scarce  twenty  summers  mantle  o'er  his  brow,  i 

Tet  hoary  years  no  wiser  gifts  bestow :  J 

And  hark  !  with  life-reviving  words  he  cries,  1 

"  Eise  from  thy  death-swoon,  prostrate  England,  rise ! " 

1, 
High  on  her  beetling  clifh  the  island  queen 
Bedc  ning  her  hero  to  the  shore  is  seen. 
As  the  fierce  tempest's  baffling  surge  he  braves : 
And  thus  her  voice  comes  hoarsely  o'er  the  waves ;  j 

**  I  breathe,  I  live  again  at  thy  command ; 
But  ah  !  how  few  thy  barks,  how  small  thy  band  ! 
Before  thee,  Stephen's  countless  hosts  advance. 
Behind  thee,  low*rs  the  mighty  pow'r  of  Prance." 
"  Fear  not  for  me,"  the  hero  answering  cried,  ^j 

**  Be  mine  the  glory,  mine  the  noble  pride,  **i 

Though  kings  o'er  hosts  their  flaunting  banners  fliug,  j 

Conquering  with  few,  to  earn  the  name  of  kfcg."  I 

"  What  banner  thine  1    Fain  would  my  aching  eye 

Midst  baffling  winds  its  bright  device  descry." 

"  Thy  own  red-cross,  proud  England,  leads  me  on^  ^ 

To  fields  where  glory,  freedom,  shall  be  won ; 

Fit  emblem  ours  to  consecrate  the  fight. 

Of  suffering  innocence  with  lawless  might.  ^ 

I  come  to  cause  the  tyrant's  rule  to  cease. 

And  o'er  the  gasping  land  spread  smiling  peace ;  ^^^ 

Land  of  my  sires  !  thy  blest  deliverer  be. 

And,  Christ  me  aiding,  give  thee  liberty. 

Or  lifeless  on  thy  blood-stained  soil  to  lie. 

For  thee  to  conquer,  or  for  thee  to  die."  \ 

"When  now  the  illustrious  duke,  making  ihe  passage  in  a        ^ 
violent  gale,  was  landed  on  the  English  shore,  flie  kingdom 
was  suddenly  agitated  by  ihe  mutterings  of  rumours,  like  a         ^ 
quivering  bed  of  reeds  swept  by  the  blasts  of  the  wind. 
^Reports,  as  usual,  rapidly  spreading,  disseminated  znattear 


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A.D.  1152.]  HENBT'b  SlKX^EaBlSS.  ^dl 

of  joy  and  exultation  to  stnne,  of  fear  and  sorrow  to  others. 
But  the  delight  of  those  who  rejoiced  ut  his  arrival  was 
somewhat  abated  by  the  tidings  that  he  had  so  few  fol- 
lowers \  while  the  apprehensions  of  their  enemies  were  by 
the  same  reports  not  a  little  relieved.  Both  parties  weuB 
struck  at  his  encountering  the  dangers  of  a  tempestuoiKi 
sea  in  mid-winter ;  what  the  one  considered  intrepidity,  the 
other  called  rashness.  But  the  brave  young  prince,  of  all 
things  disliking  delay,  collected  his  adherents,  both  those 
he  found  and  those  he  brought  with  him,  and  laid  siege  to 
Malmesbury  Castled  The  excellences  of  such  a  man  are 
«o  many  and  gi-eat  that  they  must  not  be  enlarged  upon, 
lest  the  extended  narrative  of  his  achievements  should  lead 
to  wearisome  prolixity.  In  short,  then,  having  invested 
this  castie,  for  he  was  not  long  in  executing  wlmt  he  imder- 
took,  he  presentiy  took  it  by  storm.  After  the  place  was 
taken,  the  strong  keep,  which  could  only  be  reduced  by 
famine,  was  still  held  for  the  king  by  Jordan,  who  sallied 
from  it,  and,  making  all  haste,  informed  him  of  what  had 
taken  place.  Disturbed  by  messengers  of  the  evil  tidings, 
the  king's  coimtenance  changed  from  dignity  to  grief; 
nevertheless,  he  lost  no  time  in  collecting  all  his  forces, 
and  pitched  his  camp  near  Malmesbmy.  The  day  after  his^ 
arrival,  iie  drew  out  his  army  in  batde  array.  It  included 
a  great  body  of  distinguished  knights,  and  made  a  splendid 
and  formidable  appearance,  with  its  noble  chiefs,  and  their 
banners  glittering  with  gold ;  but  God  was  not  with  them, 
in  whom  only  there  is  entire  safety.  Foi-  the  floodgates  of 
heaven  were  opened,  and  heavy  rain  drove  in  their  faces, 
with  violent  gusts  of  wind  and  severe  cold,  so  that  God 
himself  appeared  to  fight  for  the  duke.  The  royal  army, 
however,  marched  in  good  order,  though  suffering  greatiy,. 
and  contending  with  the  elements,  which  seemed  to  be  ia 
aroK  against  them.     The  young  dukes  army  trusted  more 

*  Roger  of  Wendoier  says  that  Henry  broxiglit  with  him  a  fleet  ot  M 
sail  and  a  laige  army. 

'  The  ''  Acts  of  King  Stephen"  represent  the  young  prince  as  having  on 
.his  first  hinding  attacked  successively  Oricklade  and  Bourton,  from  both  of 
which  places  he  was  repulsed ;  after  which  his  force  dwindled  away,  and  he 
was  reduced  to  great  extremities.  Roger  of  Wendover  says  he  took  Malmes- 
bory  on  the  ere  of  the  Epiphany,  and  then  besieged  Omwniarsh,  near 
WjlHin^. 

u  a 


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293  HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON.  [BOOK  Vm. 

to  its  valour  than  its  numbers,  but  its  especial  dependence 
was  on  the  mercy  of  God  and  the  justice  of  the  cause  for 
which  it  stood  in  arms.  It  was  drawn  up  on  the  bank  of  a 
stream  of  water,  not  far  from  the  walls  of  the  town  just 
named,  which  was  so  flooded  by  the  torrents  of  rain  and 
snow  that  no  one  could  venture  to  ford  it  without  shrink- 
ing from  the  attempt,  and,  once  committed  to  the  current, 
there  was  no  gauiing  the  bank.  The  young  and  illustrious 
duke  was  at  the  head  of  his  troops  in  splendid  armour, 
which  set  off  his  noble  person,  so  that  we  may  say  his 
arms  did  not  so  much  become  him  as  he  his  arms.  *  He 
and  his  followers  had  the  tempest  of  wind  and  rain  at  their 
backs,  while  it  drove  in  the  faces  of  the  king  and  his  army, 
so  that  they  could  hardly  support  their  armour  and  handle 
their  spears,  dripping  with  wet.  It  was  the  Almighty's 
design  that  his  child  should  gain  possession  of  the  kingdom 
without  the  effusion  of  blood ;  so  that  when  neither  party 
could  cross  the  river,  and  the  king  could  no  longer  endure 
the  severity  of  the  weather,  he  marched  back  to  London, 
his  operations  having  failed,  and  his  discomfiture  being  com- 
plete. The  tower,  therefore,  which  tbe  duke  was  besieging, 
being  speedily  surrendered,  he  lost  no  time  in  following  out 
with  alacrity  his  main  object  of  marching  to  the  relief  of 
the  garrison  of  Wallingford  Castle,  now  almost  exhausted  by 
famine.  Having  collected  a  large  body  of  troops  to  convey 
a  supply  of  provisions  to  the  beleaguered  garrison,  he 
effected  his  design  without  opposition,  under  favour  of 
Providence ;  for  tiiough  there  were  several  castles  in  the 
neighbourhood  held  by  strong  parties  of  the  king's  troops, 
they  offered  him  no  molestation  either  in  going  or  return- 
ing. This  having  been  speedily  accomplished,  the  valiant 
duke,  assembling  all  the  militia  of  the  country,  which 
flocked  to  his  standard,  laid  siege  to  the  castle  of  Craw- 
marsh,  commencing  the  difficult  and  important  enterprise 
by  diggirg  a  deep  trench  round  the  walls  and  his  own 
camp,  so  that  his  army  had  no  egress  but  by  the  castle  of 
Wallingford,  and  the  besieged  had  none  whatever.  Upon 
hearing  this,  tlie  king,  assembling  the  whole  force  he  could 
muster  tliroughout  his  territories,  seriously  threatened  the 
duke's  position.  But  the  duke,  imder  no  alarm,  though 
his  forces  were  inferior  to  the  king's,  caused  the  work 


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A.D.  1153.]  TRUCE   WITH   KIXG   STEPHEN.  293 

•which  he  had  thrown  up  for  the  protection  of  his  camp  to 
he  levelled,  and,  raising  the  siege,  marched  in  good  order 
against  the  enemy.  The  royal  troops,  when,  unexpectedly, 
they  perceived  the  duke's  army  drawn  up  in  battle  array  in 
their  front,  were  struck  with  a  sudden  panic,  but  the  king, 
not  disheartened,  gave  orders  that  his  troops  should  march 
from  their  camp  prepared  for  battle.  Then  the  traitorous 
nobles  interfered,  and  proposed  among  themselves  terms  of 
peace.  They  loved,  indeed,  nothing  better  than  disunion ; 
but  they  had  no  inclination  for  war,  and  felt  no  desire  to 
exalt  either  the  one  or  the  other  of  the  pretenders  to  the 
crown,  so  that  by  humbling  his  rival  they  themselves 
might  become  entirely  subject  to  the  other.  They  pre- 
ferred that,  the  two  being  in  mutual  fear,  the  royal  autiiority 
should,  with  respect  to  themselves,  be  kept  in  abeyance. 
The  king  and  the  duke,  therefore,  being  sensible  of  the 
treachery  of  their  adherents,  were  reluctantly  compelled  to 
make  a  truce  between  themselves.  God,  as  usual,  was  the 
protector  of  the  young  duke.  The  royal  camp  to  which  he 
had  laid  siege  was  raised  in  consequence  oflhe  truce ;  and 
the  king  and  the  duke  had  a  conference  without  witnesses, 
across  a  rivulet,  on  the  terms  of  a  lasting  accommodation 
between  themselves,  during  which  the  faitiilessness  of  their 
nobles  w£is  anxiously  considered.  At  this  meeting  the 
business  of  the  treaty  was  only  entered  upon,  its  comple- 
tion being  deferred  to  another  opportunity.  After  each 
had  returned  to  his  quarters,  their  quarrel  still  unsettled, 
light  dawned  from  an  unexpected  quarter  on  the  fortunes 
of  the  great  duke.  For  it  happened  that  his  two  most 
determined  and  powerful  enemies,  Eustace,  the  king's  son, 
and  Simon,  esirl  of  Northampton,  were  suddenly  snatched 
away,  Providence  so  ordering  it,  at  the  same  moment ;  in 
consequence  of  which  the  hopes  and  the  courage  of  all  who 
were  opposed  to  the  duke  vanished  at  once.  Earl  Simon, 
who  exemplified  all  that  was  licentious,  and  practised  all 
that  was  unbecoming,  was  bmied  at  Northampton.  The 
king's  son  was  buried  in  the  abbey  foimded  by  his  mother 
at  Feversham ;  a  good  soldier,  but  an  ungodly  man,  who 
dealt  harshly  with  the  rulers  of  the  church,  being  their 
determined  persecutor.  The  Almighty  having  removed 
these  formidable  adversaries  of  Heniy,  his  beloved,  He  had 


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S{04*  HBNHT  OF  HUNTIKGDOir,  [bOOK  vm. . 

now  in  his  mercy  prqMured  the  way  for  Ma  reigning,  m. 
tranquillity. 

The  third  siege  tmdertaken  was  that  of  Staoaford.  The 
ttrwn  sorrendered  mmtediatelyy  but  the  garrison  of  thei 
castle  resisted,  and  sent  messengers  to  ^be  king  intreatiiig; 
his  aid  agamst  the  besiegers^  At  that  time  t^  king.  had. 
laid  siege  to  the  oasde  of  Ipswidi^  which  Ht^h  Bigod  held' 
against  him,  and  being  imwHlmg  to  raise  ^e  siege  and. 
relieve  the  garrison  of  Staoaiford,  that  castle  was  snurendered. 
to  Prince  Henry,  while  Ipswich  was  given  up  to  the  king. 
The  Buke  of  Ifonnaady,  departing^from  Stamford,  mardied 
to  Nottingham,  whieh  he  took  possessionem;  buttheenemy^ 
who  held  the  castle,  set  the  town  on  fire  [amd  the  duke  was 
so  afflicted  at  the  burning  of  the  town,  th^t  he  drew  off  his 
atrtny].^ 

Meanwhile,  Archbishop  Thec^)ald  had  frequ^it  consuka^ 
tioirs  with  the  king,  in  which  he  ui^d  him  to  come  to^ 
terms  with  the  duke,  with  whom  also  he  communicated  by 
messengers.  He  foimd  a  coadjutor  in  Henry,  bishop  of, 
Winchester,  who  had  taken  the  lead  in  disturbing  the  king- 
dom, by  giving  the  crown  to  his  brother  Stephen,  Of  th^ 
he  now  repented,  and  finding  the  whole  kingdom  desolated 
by  robbery,  ^oce^  Mid  slaughter,  he  proposed  to  find  a  re- 
medy in  the  concord  of  3ie  chiefs.  More  especially,  the 
providence  of  God,  whidi  makes  peace,  and  is  the  givor 
of  good,  withdrew  the  scourge  whieh  tormented  England, 
causing  their  imdertaking  to  prosper,  so  that  by  its  blessing, 
on  their  efforts  the  peace  was  solemnly  ratified.  What 
boundless  joy,  what  a  day  of  rejoicing,  when  the  king  himr 
self  led  the  iUustrioos  young  prince  through  the  streets  of 
Winchester,  with  a  splendid  procession  of  bishops  and 
nobles,  and  amidst  the  acclamations  of  the  thronging 
people ;  for  the  king  received  him  as  his  son  by  adoption, 
and  acknowledged  him  heir  to  the  crown!  Erom  thence  he 
accompanied  the  king  to  London,  where  he  was  received 
with  no  less  joy  by  the  people  assembled  in  countless 
numbers^  and  by  billliant  processions,  as  was  fitting  for  so 
great  a  prince.  Thus,  though  God's  mercy,,  a&er  a  night 
o(  misery,  peace  dawned  on  the  ruined  realm  of  Englsmd. 

I  The*  words  vnMa  tb&  Imekets^aKe  iaserted  fimm  tb«  B«yid  MS* 


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A;D.  1154.]  HENRY  RETOMW  TO  NORMANDY.  ^^ 

These  rejokings  end6<i,  the  king  and  his  new  son  parted, 
soon  to  meet  again;  fbr  the  pea«e  yms  ratified  before^ 
Christ&iaB,  and  on  the  oeta^t^  of  the  I^iphany  they  met^ 
ait  Oxford.  The  duke  had  thmi  just  sp^t  a  yeaa*  in  the 
oonqaest,  yeta,  rather,  the  reeovery,  of  England.  There  all 
the  great  men  of  ^e  realm,  by  the  king's  command,  did' 
HiMdage,  and  {»^mised  the  fesdty  due  to  their  liege  lord  ta 
the  Duke  of  Normandyv  saving  only  their  allegiance  to 
King  Ste{4ien  during  his  life.  New  rejoicings  toc^  place 
at  this  magnificent  assembly,  after  which  all  departed  mth 
joy  a&d  g^dness  to  their  homes.  After  a  short  interval 
tl^eire  was  another  meeting  at  Dimstable,  where  a  slight 
oioitd.  overshadowed  the  day  of  gladness  ;  ifbr  the  duke  was 
cUsBaitiBfied  that  the  castles,  which  after  the  death  of  King 
Henry  were  built  in  every  part  of  the  country  with  the 
"mast  designs,  had  not  been  demolished,  according  to  the 
provisions  of  the  trea^  so  solemnly  made  and  ratified. 
Some  of  them  indeed  had  been  razed,  but  others  were 
^ored,  by  the  indulgence  or  the  policy  of  the  king,  and 
this  £q)peared  to  weaken  the  obligations  of  the  treaty. 
Upon  the  duke's  complaining  of  it  to  the  king,  he  met  widi 
a  repulse ;  but,  wishing  to  preserve  a  good  imderstanding 
with  his  new  father,  he  reluctantly  deferred  the  matter, 
lest  it  ^ould  disturb  their  concord,  and  they  parted  ami- 
cably. Not  long  afterwards,  the  duke,  having  obtained  the 
king's  Ucence,  returned  to  Normandy,  flushed  with  his 
success. 

These  were  the  acts  of  Henry,  the  most  illustrious  of 
}'ouths,  diuing  his  second  visk  to  England.  Let  me  not 
be  censured  for  having  committed  to  writing  so  few  par- 
ticulars of  his  splendid  career  \  Having  to  tell  of  so  many 
and  great  kings,  and  the  series  of  events  for  many  ages,  if 
I  had  attempted  to  give  fiilness  to  my  History  I  must  have 
written  volumes.  I  have,  therefore,  chosen  rather  to  collect 
into  one  volume  an  abridgment  of  history,  so  that  posterity 
may  not  be  altogether  ignorant  of  former  events.     I  now 

The  anonymous  author  of  the  "  Acts  of  King  Stephen  **  represents  the 
campsign  of  Henry  II.  after  his  landing  in  England,  and  the  character  ol 
the  young  prince,  altogether  in  a  different  light.  See  the  account  towards 
the  oloBe  of  Stephen's  reign  in  the  latter  part  of  this  volume. 


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296  HENRY  OF  HUKTINGDON.  [BOOK  Vm. 

return  to  my  subject.  Eetuming  into  France  triumphant, 
the  duke  was  joyfully  received  by  his  mother  and  brothers, 
and  the  people  of  Normandy,  Anjou,  Maine,  and  Poitou, 
-with  the  honours  due  to  him.  King  Stephen,  also,  now 
for  the  first  time  reigning  in  peace,  was,  thanks  to  his 
adopted  son,  powerful  enough  to  maintain  the  authority  of 
his  royal  station.  But  O !  the  desperate  fury  of  mortals ! 
O  their  imaccountable  perversity!  Certain  sons  of  men, 
"  whose  teeth  were  spears  and  arrows,  and  their  tongue  a 
sharp  sword,"  made  zealous  attempts  to  sow  the  seeds  of 
discord  between  the  king  who  was  present  and  the  duke  at 
a  distance.  The  king  could  hardly  resist  their  persuasions, 
and  some  thought  he  was  already  yielding  to  them,  and 
that  he  listened  to  their  evil  coimsels  with  a  secret  pleasure, 
amdi  though  he  affected  to  discountenance  them,  more  than 
was  right.  But  the  counsels  of  these  sons  of  men  were 
one  thing,  the  counsels  of  the  Almighty  another ;  and  He, 
as  was  fitting,  perfected  his  own,  and  made  the  counsels  of 
the  wicked  and  their  perverse  machinations  of  no  effect- 
The  king  having  besieged  and  taken  the  castle  of  Drake, 
near  York,  and  triumphantly  taken  and  razed  many  other 
castles,  he  went  to  Dover,  to  hold  a  conference  with  tlie 
Earl  of  Flanders.  While  talking  with  him,  the  king  fell 
sick ;  of  which  sickness  he  died  eight  days  before  the  feast 
of  All  Saints  [•24th  of  October],  after  a  distracted  and  un- 
Ibrtimate  reign  of  nineteen  years.  He  was  interred  in  the 
abbey  of  Feversham,  near  his  wife  and  son.  Theobald, 
archbishop  of  Canterbmy,  with  many  of  the  English  nobles, 
dispatched  messengers  in  all  haste  to  tlieh'  now  lord  the 
Diike  of  Normandy,  intreating  him  to  come  over  without 
delay,  and  receive  the  crown  of  England.  Hindered,  how- 
ever, by  contrary  winds  and  a  stormy  sea,  as  well  as  other 
circumstances,  it  was  not  till  six  days  before  Christmas 
that,  accompanied  by  his  wife  and  brothers,  with  a  retinue 
of  great  nobles  and  a  strong  force,  he  landed  in  the  New 
Forest.  England,  therefore,  was  left  for  six  weeks  without 
a  king ;  but  by  God's  providence  it  was  in  perfect  tranquil- 
lity, tiie  love  or  the  fear  of  the  expected  king  securing  it. 
Upon  his  landing  he  proceeded  to  London,  and,  ascending 
the  throne  of  England,  was  crowned  and  consecrated  with 


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A.D.  1154.]  HENRY  H.   INAUGURATED.  297 

becoming  pomp  and  splendour,  amidst  universal  rejoicings, 
which  many  mingled  with  tears  of  joy.  The  happiness  of 
this  period  I  have  thus  described  in  heroic  verse : — 

Low  lies  the  head  that  wore  fair  England'a  crown, 

Henry  delays  *  to  mount  the  vacant  throne ; 

Tet  marvel  not  that  wars  and  tumults  cease, 

And  factious  strife  is  hushed  in  waiting  peace. 

Stephen  grasped  feebly,  through  his  troubled  reign. 

What  absent  Henry's  name,  alone,  can  gain : 

If  such  when  ling'ring  in  a  foreign  land. 

What  with  the  reins  of  empire  in  his  hand  ? 

If  thus  the  early  dawn  with  distant  light 

Can  pierce  the  clouds  and  chase  the  shades  of  night, 

What  then  the  glory  when  the  noontide  sun 

Pours  its  full  radiance  from  the  zenith  won  ? 

Then  shall  beam  forth,  in  England's  happier  hour. 

Justice  with  mercy,  and  well-balanced  power ; 

Unblemished  loyalty,  and  honour  bright. 

And  love  with  chastened  pleasure  shall  unite. 

Such  gems  shall  sparkle  in  thy  jewelled  crown. 

And  deck  it  with  a  lustre  all  thy  own. 

Fresh  genial  warmth  shall  burst  the  icy  chain. 

In  which,  benumbed  and  bound,  the  land  has  lain ; 

England  with  tears  of  joy  shall  lift  her  head. 

And  thus  shall  hail  her  saviour  from  the  dead : 

**  A  thing  of  earth — a  lifeless  body  mine; 

The  soul,  the  vivifying  spirit,  thine ; 

He-entering  now  the  frame  inanimate, 

The  soul  shall,  out  of  death,  new  life  create." 

[The  accession  of  a  new  king  demands  a  new  Book.]^ 

1  ''  Henry's  power  was  so  well  established  in  England,  that  he  continued 
and  concluded  the  siege  of  a  castle  which  he  was  investing  before  he  came 
over." — Huine* 

'  Savile's  printed  text  of  the  history  concludes  with  the  verses ;  but 
the  sentence  within  the  brackets  follows  in  the  Boyal  MS.,  in  the  same 
handwriting  as  the  rest  of  the  History ;  whence  it  may  be  inferred  that 
it  waf  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  intention  to  add  another  Book,  in  continua- 
tion, containing  some  account  of  the  reign  of  Henry  II.  It  is  probable  that 
he  did  not  long  survive  that  king's  accession,  and  death  thus  frustrated  his 
design.  There  is  a  short  continuation  added  to  the  Eoyal  MS.  in  a  different 
hand,  as  follows : — "  This  Henry  II.,  son  of  the  Countess  of  Anjou, 
reigned  xxxiv.  years.  Enacting  unjust  laws,  he  was  opposed  by  St.  Thomas 
of  Canterbury,  who  received  the  crown  of  martyrdom.  He  crowned  his 
son  Henry,  who  was  called  Henry  III.,  in  his  own  lifetime ;  but  he  died 
before  his  father.  Henry  II.  had  four  sons  by  Eleanoi^  viz.  Henry  III., 
Bichard,  John,  and  Geoffrey,  whose  son  Arthur  was  muraered  by  John." 


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A 


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HENRY, 
ARCHDEACON  OF  HUNTINGDON, 


OH 

CONTEMPT   OF  THE  WOBLD; 

OB  ON 

THE  BISHOPS  AND  OTHER  ILLUSTRIOUS  MEN  OF  HIS  AGE. 
IN  A  LETTER  TO  WALTER. 

lOBMIHa  OBIOINALLT  IHS  SIOHTH   BOOK  OF  HIS  HI8T0BT. 


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HENRY  OF  HUNTINGDON'S 

LETTER  TO  WALTER!. 


Walter^  my  friend,  once  the  flower  of  our  youth  and  the 
ornament  of  om'  times,  now  alas!  you  are  worn  by  a 
lingering  disease,  and  languish  under  a  painful  disorder. 
When  we  were  in  the  prime  of  our  age,  I  dedicated  to  you 
a  Book  of  poetical  epigrams,  and  I  fidso  proflFered  for  your 
acceptance  a  poem  which  I  composed  on  love.  Such 
trifles  were  fitting  our  youth,  but  now  that  we  are  old  men 
what  I  offer  you  is  becoming  our  years.     I  have,  therefore, 

'  In  the  MSS.  which  have  been  collated,  this  epistle,  with  three  others, 
form  the  Eighth  Book  of  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  History.  The  first 
edition,  so  to  speak,  of  the  History  concluding  with  the  reign  of  Henry  I., 
in  the  year  1135,  the  epistle,  which  was  written  in  that  year,  and  treats 
principally  of  persons  connected  with  the  narrative  of  the  Seventh  Book, 
was  a  regular  sequel  to  it.  In  the  original  order,  the  Ninth  Book  comprised 
an  account  of  the  miracles  related  by  Bede ;  and  afterwards  Huntingdon 
composed  a  Tenth  Book,  continuing  his  History  through  the  reign  of  Stephen 
to  the  accession  of  Henry  II.  But  it  appears  that  the  transcribers  of  the 
HSS.  still  contimied  to  insert  the  epistles  and  the  account  of  the  miracles  as 
the  Eighth  and  Ninth  Books,  though  these  interrupted  the  progress  of  the 
History,  which  proceeds  consecutively  from  the  reign  of  Henry  I.,  with 
which  the  first  edition  closed,  to  the  reign  of  Stephen,  which  is  the  subject 
of  Huntingdon's  continuation  of  his  work  in  his  last  Book.  Sir  Henry 
Savile,  in  his,  which  was  the  first,  printed  edition  of  Huntingdon's  history, 
calls  this  the  Eighth  Book;  stating  that  some  MSS.  omit  the  two  intervening 
ones,  which  he  did  not  publish.  Not  to  interrupt  the  tenor  of  the  narrative, 
I  have  followed  Savile's  arrangement ;  but  for  the  reasons  given  in  the  Pre- 
£Eice,  I  have  thought  it  desirable  to  add  the  "  Epistle  to  Walter  "  as  an  ap- 
pendix to  the  History.. 

'  Savile  states  that  Walter  was  Archdeacon  of  Oxford.  Henry  of  Hun- 
tingdon does  not  insert  his  name  in  the  list  of  dignitaries  of  the  church  of 
Lincoln,  given  in  this  epistle ;  but  that  may  be  accounted  for  from  its  being 
addressed  to  Walter  himself 


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803  HENRY   OF   HUNTINODON's 

•written  something  on  the  contempt  of  the  world,  for  your 
use  and  my  own,  which  may  occupy  your  hours  of  languor, 
and  to  which  I  myself  may  recur  with  profit  I  do  not 
intend  a  rhetorical  or  philosophical  dissertation ;  the  pages  of 
holy  writ  speak  throughout  of  this  one  thing  in  a  voice  of 
authority,  and  the  philosophers  have  made  it  their  earnest 
study ;  but  I  shall  treat  the  subject  in  the  simplest  manner, 
so  as  to  make  it  plain  to  the  mulUtude,  that  is,  the  un- 
learned, and  to  draw  from  what  has  passed  imder  our  own 
observation,  reasons  for  contemning,  now  that  we  are  old 
men,  what  is  really  contemptible.  I  will  not,  therefore, 
have  recourse  to  former  Histories ;  I  shall  relate  nothing  l^t 
has  been  tcdd  before,  but  only  what  is  within  my  own 
luiowledge,  the  only  evidence  which  can  be  deemed  au- 
thentic. But  if  the  great  names  of  our  times  should 
appear  uncouth  to  posterity,  or  my  treatise  should  seeiji 
indigested  and  wandering,  and  be  considered  wearisome, 
because  so  many  such  names  are  introduced,  at  least  it 
may  be  profitable  to  you  and  myself. 

The  Jirst  chapter  shall  have  reference  to  matters  concern- 
ing our  Church.  As,  then,  in  youth  the  seeds  of  aU 
manner  of  vices  bud  luxuriantly,  that  which  rears  itself 
most  vigorously,  and  overtops  the  rest,  is  the  love  of  this 
j^reseni  world.  But  from  the  simplicify  natuml  to  the  age, 
youtii  is  free  from  many  errors,  such  as  scepticism,  fickle- 
ness, and  the  like,  while  the  tendency  I  have  spoken  of, 
being  more  seductive  than  ihe  rest,  abides  and  ^ins 
strength.  As  age  advancea,  things  which  once  charmied 
lose  ^ir  relish,  and  ihe  sweet  becomes  bitter.  Evil  haHts 
fasten  on  ihe  mind,  as  with  a  hook  which  cannot  be  eartau- 
cated ;  and  men  are  led  captive  by  tiie  love  of  wealth  and 
of  fleeting  pleasures.  This  I  have  leami  by  my  own  expe- 
rience. For  when  I  was  a  mere  dhild,  m  my  growing  up, 
and  while  I  was  a  young  man,  I  had  opportunities  of  elos^ 
observing  the  splendour  in  whicii  our  Bishop  Kobert  lived?-*. 

'  Robert  de  Bloet,  bishop  of  Lincoln,  in  whose  hooiebold  Hemy  was 
broag^ht  up  from  his  eaxiiest  yean.  We  have  here  a  lively  picture  of  the 
sumptnoiis  mode  of  living  of  the  great  ecclesiastics  of  those  times.  Bishop 
Bobert  was  also  jnatidary  of  all  Eafland,  and  much  employed  by  Henry  I. 
in  secular  afiairs.    See  the  preceding  History,  p.  2fi0« 


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XETTEE  TO  WAISES.  SOS 

I  saw  hk  Tetinue  of  gallant  knights  and  noble  youths ;  his 
horses  c^  price,  his  vessefe  of  gold  or  of  silver-gilt ;  the 
splendid  array  of  his  plate,  Ihe  gorgeousnese  of  his  servi- 
tors ;  the  fine  linen  and  purple  robes,  and  I  Ihought  within 
myself  that  nothing  oould  be  more  'bhssfial.  Whai,  more- 
over, all  the  world,  eveji  those  who  had  learnt  in  the  sdiools 
the  emptiness  of  sucn  things,  were  obsequious  to  him,  and 
he  was  looked  up  to  as  the  father  and  lonl  of  all,  it  was  no 
wonder  that  he  valued  hi^y  his  worldly  advantages.  If  at 
that  time  any  one  had  told  me  that  this  splendour  which 
we  all  admired  ought  to  be  held  in  contempt,  with  what  face, 
in  what  temper,  should  I  have  heard  it?  I  should  have 
thou^t  hhn  more  insensate  than  Orestes,  more  querulous 
than  Thersites.  It  appeared  to  me  that  nothing  could 
exceed  happiness  so  exalted.  But  when  I  became  a  man, 
and  heard  the  scurrilous  language  T^^ch  was  addressed  to 
him,  I  felt  that  I  shoidd  have  fainted  if  it  had  been  used  to 
me,  who  had  nothing,  in  such  a  presence.  Then  I  began 
to  value  tess  what  I  had  before  so  highly  esteemed. 

It  is  very  common  for  worldly  men  to  experience  the 
most  painful  reverses  before  the  end  of  their  career.  I  will 
relate  what  happened  to  Bishop  Eobert  before  his  death. 
He,  who  had  been  Justiciary  of  all  England,  and  univei'- 
sally  feared,  was  in  the  last  year  of  his  life  twice  impleaded 
by  the  king  before  an  ignoble  judge,  and  both  tim^  con- 
demned with  disgrace  in  heavy  penalties.  His  anguish  of 
mind  in  consequence  was  such,  Ihat  I  saw  biirn  i^ed  teaas 
during  dinner,  while  I,  then  his  archdeacon,  was  sitting 
near  him.  On  the  cause  being  adted,  he  replied,  "For- 
merly my  own  attendants  were  sumptuously  apparelled ; 
but  now  the  fines  extorted  from  me  by  the  king,  whoae 
favour  I  have  always  cultivated,  serve  to  clothe  a  baae 
crew."  Afber  this,  he  so  entirely  despaired  of  the  ipyAl 
fevour,  Ihat  when  some  one  repeated  to  him  the  high  com- 
mendations which  the  king  had  made  of  him  in  his  absemse, 
he  exclaimed,  "  The  king  praises  no  one  whom  he  has  not 
resolved  utterly  to  ruin."  For  King  Henry,  if  I  may  ven- 
ture to  say  so,  practised  consummate  duplicity,  and  his 
designs  were  inscrutable.  A  few  days  afterwards  the  bishop 
was  at  Woodstock,  where  the  king  had  appointed  a  great 


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804  HENBY  OF  Huntingdon's 

hunting-match;  and  while  conversing  with  the  king  and 
the  Bishop  of  Salisbury,  the  two  prelates  being  the  greatest 
men  in  the  kingdom,  our  Bishop  [of  Lincola]  was  struck 
with  apoplexy.  He  was  carried  speechless  to  his  inn,  and 
there  presently  expired  in  the  king's  presence^.  Then  the 
powerftil  monarch  whom  he  had  always  faithfully  served, 
whom  he  both  loved  and  feared,  whose  favour  he  highly 
valued,  and  in  whom  he  once  placed  such  confidence,  could 
not  help  him  in  his  last  extremity.  "Cursed  be  he  that 
trusteth  in  man,  and  maketh  flesh  his  arm."*  When, 
therefore,  the  child,  or  the  stripling,  or  the  young  man 
looks  up  to  those  who  are  at  the  summit  of  fortune,  let 
them  recollect  how  uncertain  may  be  their  end,  and  that 
even  in  this  world  affliction  may  come  upon  and  consume 
them.  Bishop  Kobert  was  humane  and  humble,  he  raised 
the  fortunes  of  many,  and  crushed  no  one's ;  he  was  the 
orphan's  father,  and  beloved  by  all  who  surrounded  him ; 
but  we  have  seen  what  was  his  end. 

Something  should  be  said  of  his  predecessor  Bfemi',  who 
came  to  England  with  William  the  First,  and  was  present 
in  his  wars.  He  was  raised  to  the  bishopric  of  Dorchester 
by  that  king,  and  changing  its  seat  to  Lincoln,  he  foimded 
our  church  tliere,  endowed  it  with  ample  possessions,  and 
attached  to  it  men  of  worth.  I  speak  only  of  what  I  have 
seen  and  heard.  Him,  indeed,  I  never  saw,  but  I  knew  all 
the  venerable  men  to  whom  he  gave  appointments  in  his 
new  church.  I  will  mention  a  few  of  the  number.  He 
chose  Ralph,  a  venerable  priest,  for  dean,  and  appointed 
Rayner  treasurer,  whose  place  is  now  filled  by  his  nephew 
Geoffrey.  Rayner  was  so  pious  a  man,  that  he  often 
chaunted  psalms  over  the  tomb  which  he  had  built  to 
receive  his  remains,  and  there  prepared  himself  by  con- 
tinual prayers  for  his  eternal  home ;  that  when  the  days 
of  his  devotion  were  ended,  and  he  was  laid  there,  he 
might  be  partaker  of  the  mercy  of  God.     Felix  was  an 

>  The  Saxon  Obronicle  adds  some  little  details,  which  Henry  of  Hon- 
tingdon,  who  would  seem  to  have  the  best  infonnation,  omits,  both  here  and 
in  his  History ;  see  note,  pp.  250-1.  The  Chronicle,  with  which  Hunting- 
don agrees,  fixes  his  death  in  1123;  Ordericus  Yitalis  in  1118. 

*  Jer.  XT.  5.  *  See  the  preceding  History,  pp.  219-20. 


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LETTEB  TO   WALTER.  805 

exemplar  of  the  highest  excellence.  I  must  not  omit  Hugh 
the  priest,  a  man  indeed  worthy  to  be  remembered ;  for  he 
was  the  first,  and  the  prop  of  the  whole  Chapter.  He  was 
succeeded  by  Osbert,  a  most  agreeable  and  amiable  man. 
WiUiam,  a  youth  of  great  promise,  now  fills  his  place. 
Guemo  was  appointed  Precentor,  whose  office  Ealph  the 
chaimter  now  holds.  I  must  not  pass  over  Albinus  of 
Anjou,  who  was  my  own  master;  whose  brothers  were 
most  worthy  men,  and  my  associates.  They  were  graced 
by  the  triple  robe  of  the  most  profound  learning,  the 
strictest  continence,  and  perfect  purity ;  but,  by  the  inscru- 
table judgment  of  God,  they  were  afflicted  with  leprosy, 
from  which  they  are  now  cleansed  by  the  purification  of 
the  grave.  Kemi  placed  archdeacons  over  the  seven  coun- 
ties comprised  in  his  bishopric.  Bichard  was  made  Arch- 
deacon of  Lincoln,  and  was  succeeded  by  Albert  the  Lom- 
bard, who  was  succeeded  by  Wilham  of  Bayeux,  and  now 
by  Robert  the  younger,  who  is  the  richest  archdeacon  in 
England.  Nicholas^  was  Archdeacon  of  Cambridge,  Hun- 
tingdon, and  Hertford,  distinguished  no  less  by  the  graces 
of  his  person  than  by  those  of  his  mind.  About  the  time 
of  his  death,  when  Cambridgeshire  was  detached  from  our 
see,  and  attached  to  a  new  bishop,  I  myself  succeeded  to 
the  archdeaconry  of  the  two  remaining  counties.  Bishop 
Bemi  appointed  Nigel,  archdeacon  of  [North]  Hampton; 
he  was  succeeded  by  Bobert,  and,  in  turn,  by  William,  the 
exceHent  nephew  of  our  present  Bishop  Alexander  ^.  Balph 
was  appointed  to  Leicester,  and  was  succeeded  by  Godfrey, 
a  man  worthy  of  all  praise,  whose  place  is  now  filled  by 
Bobert  de  Merceto,  a  man  not  to  be  forgotten.  Oxford 
was  given  to  Alfred,  an  eminent  rhetorician.  Buckingham 
received  Alfred  the  little,  who  was  succeeded  by  Gilbert, 
distinguished  by  his  cointly  manners,  and  writings  both  in 
verse  and  prose.  Their  successor  was  Boger,  now  made 
Bishop  of  Chester.  Then  came  Bichard ;  but  it  is  now 
held  by  David,   the    brother  of  your  venerable   Bishop 

'  It  is  not  improbable  that  Nicholas  was  the  fiither  of  Henry  of  Hun- 
tingdon.    See  the  preceding  History,  p.  245. 

^  To  whom  Huntingdon  dedicated  his  History.  See  note  to  the  dedica- 
tion at  the  beginning  of  this  volume,  and  the  account  of  this  bishop's  death 
and  character  given  in  the  Eighth  Book  of  the  History. 

X 


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306  HEKBr  OF  HITKTIKODOX'S 

Alexander,  the  fifth  in  succession.  Bedford,  the  sevendi. 
archdeaconry,  was  given  to  Osbert,  who  was  succeeded  by 
!Ralph,  unhappily  killed.  Hugh  was  appointed  to  his  office, 
and  then  Nicholas,  who  is  the  fourth  in  succession.  I 
must  pass  over  the  rest  of  the  clergy,  excellent  men,  lest  I 
should  be  prolix.  Consider,  then,  how  many  of  these  reve- 
rend men  are  now  dead,  and  will  shortly  be  lost  in  oblivion. 
Beckon  also  in  your  mind's  eye  all  those  we  have  formerly 
seen,  on  the  right  of  the  choir,  and  cm  the  left ;  not  one  of 
them  now  survives.  These  men  loved  what  we  love,  sought 
vrheA  we  seek,  desired  what  we  desh-e;  but  death  has 
buried  them  tdl  in  oblivion.  It  is  our  duty  to  reflect  that 
the  same  fate  awaits  ourselves,  and  it  should  be  our  earnest: 
care  to  seek  that  which  is  durable,  that  which  has  foim- 
dation,  and  is  not  a  mere  dream ;  in  short,  that  which  hast 
a  reid  existence,  for  tilings  here  are  nought. 

The  second  chapter,  on  the  contempt  of  the  world,  con- 
cerns those  I  have  seen,  who  being  nmrtured  in  the  highest: 
prosperity,  have  been  subjected  to  tiie  severest  calamities. 
I  have  seen  Henry,  tlie  king's  son,  habited  in  robes  of  silk 
interwoven  with  gold,  surrounded  by  troops  of  attendants . 
and  guards,  and  brilliant  with  almost  celestial  splendour. 
He  was  the  only  son  of  tJie  king  said  the  qpieen,  and  looked 
with  confidence  to  the  inheritance  of  the  throne*  In  truth, 
I  know  not  whether  the  assurance  of  succeeding  to  the 
crown  vms  not  better  to  him,  than  the  present  possession 
of  it  to  his  father ;  because  the  father  had  already  spent  a. 
Icmg  period  of  his  term  of  reigning,  while  the  son  might 
count  on  the  entire  period  of  his  own.  His  father,  indeed, 
had  to  reflect  with  sorrow  on  the  timo  when  it  would  be  no 
longer  his,  while  the  son  could  anticipate  its  possession, 
with  unmixed  joy.  But  unpleasing  thoughts  suggested 
tiiemselves  to  my  mind,  the  presage  of  future  calamity, 
when  I  observed  the  excessive  state  with  which  he  was 
surrounded,  and  his  own  pride.  I  said  to  myself,  "  This 
prince,  so  pandered,  is  destined  to  be  food  for  the  fire  !  " 
He,  indeed,  from  his  proud  eminence,  fixed  his  thoughts 
on  his  future  kingdom ;  but  God  said,  "  Not  so,  unrigh- 
teous man*,  not  so  !"    And  it  came  to  pass  that  tlie  head 

'  Huntingdon  seems  to  indulge  his  cynical  humour  in  treating,  of  this 
young  prince.     Except  the  {Hide  and  ifidulgence,  natural  to  his  station,  which 


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LETTER   TO    WALTER.  30T 

which  should  have  worn  a  crown  of  gold,  was  rudely  dashed 
against  the  rocks ;  instead  of  wearing  embroidered  robes, 
he  floated  naked  in  liie  waves  ;  and  instead  of  ascending  a 
lofty  throne,  he  found  his  grave  in  the  bellies  of  fishes  at 
the  bottom  of  the  sea.  Such  was  the  change  wrought  by 
the  right  hand  of  the  Most  High !  So  also  Kichard,  earl  of 
Chester,  the  only  son  of  Earl  Hugh,  nurtured  in  the  greatest 
^lendour,  in  the  full  prospect  of  inheriting  his  father's  high 
honours,  perished,  while  still  young,  in  tlie  same  ship,  and 
shared  tiie  same  burial.  Eichard,  also,  the  king's  bastard 
son,  who  had  been  splendidly  brought  up  by  our  Bishop 
Bobert,  and  treated  with  distinction  by  me,  and  others  of 
the  same  family  of  which  I  was  then  a  member* ;  one 
whom  we  admired  for  his  talents,  and  from  whom  we 
expected  great  things,  he  too  was  dashed  on  the  rocks  in 
the  same  ship,  when  no  wind  ruffled  the  sea,  and,  being, 
{dunged  in  its  depths,  met  with  a  sudden  death.  Again, 
yi^nen  William,  the  king's  nephew,  that  is,  son  of  Kobert, 
duke  of  Normandy,  who  now  remwned  sole  heir  to  the 
crown,  and  was  judged  worthy  of  it  in  the  opinion  of  all 
men,  had,  by  his  consummate  ability,  acquired  the  earldom 
of  Flanders,  and  by  his  indomitable  valour  defeated  Theo- 
doric  in  a  pitched  battle,  he  perished  from  a  slight  wound. 
Thus  the  hopes  of  aU  who  looked  upon  him  as  their  future 
king  were  disappointed. 

If  I  were  to  dwell  on  such  examples,  my  letter  would 
swell  to  a  large  book.  But  I  must  not  omit  to  mention 
<mr  dean  Symon,  the  son  of  our  Bishop  Bobert,  bom  to 
hdm  while  he  was  Chancellor  of  the  great  King  William. 
He  being  educated  at  court,  was,  while  yet  young,  appointed 
our  dean,  and  made  rapid  advances  in  the  royal  favour  and 

onr  liistorian  had  opportunities  of  observing,  I  am  not  aware  of  any  blemish  on 
his  character,  unless  there  is  any  ground  for  including  him  in  the.  foul  impu^ 
tation  which  Huntingdon  attaches  to  the  memory  of  most  of  those  who 
perished  in  the  shipwreck.  But  I  have  not  found  aity  other  authority  for 
it  than  the  passage  in  Huntingdon's  History.  See  p.  249  ;  and  our  author 
there  mentions  it  only  as  a  report.  The  gallantry  with  which  the  prince  at^ 
tempted  to  rescue  his  sister,  the  Countess  of  Perche,  from  the  wreck,  and  in 
BO  doing  perished  himself,  leaves  a  favourable  impression.  See  in  Malmet- 
bury,  book  v.  p.  455,  a  fuller  atcount  of  this  disaster  than  is  given  by 
our  author. 

1  See  the  earlier  part^of  thi»  letter,  p.  802. 

Z  d 


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808  HENRY  OF  HUMTINGDOn's 

in  courtly  honours.  He  was  gifted  with  a  lively  genius 
and  a  brilliant  eloquence ;  his  person  was  noble,  and  his 
manners  were  graceful ;  though  young  in  years,  he  was  old 
in  wisdom :  but  these  qualities  were  tdnted  by  his  pride. 
From  pride  springs  en^y,  from  envy  hatred,  from  hatred 
slanders,  quarrels,  and  secret  accusations.  He  spoke  truly 
of  himself  when  he  said,  "I  mix  with  the  courtiers  like  salt 
among  live  eels  ;'*  for  as  ihe  salt  excruciates  them,  so  he 
tormented  by  his  calumnies  all  who  were  attached  to  the 
royal  household  :  but  as  the  salt  loses  its  pungency  by  the 
moisture  exuding  from  the  eels,  so  the  universality  of  his 
slander  deprived  it  of  its  acrimony,  and  nullified  his 
malice.  One  part  of  this  adage  he  imderstood  veiy  well, 
but  the  other  did  not  occur  to  him.  He  spoke  the  truth 
of  himself  without  knowing  it:  for,  from  having  been 
among  the  highest  at  court  and  in  the  royal  favour,  after  a 
time  he  fell  under  the  king's  extreme  displeasure,  and 
being  thrown  into  prison,  from  which  it  is  reported  he 
escaped  through  a  sewer,  he  became  an  exile  and  a  ruined 
man  while  he  was  still  young.  In  him,  therefore,  was  well 
exemplified  the  proverb,  "  Those  who  are  brought  up  among 
flower  beds  are  not  far  from  dung."  We  must  not  be 
surprised,  then,  when  we  see  that  noble  youths,  brilliant 
with  personal  graces  and  fortune's  favours,  frequently  fall 
into  the  greatest  misery.  Then  all  their  vain  hopes  vanish, 
and  that  which  was  nothing  is  reduced  to  nothing. 

My  third  observation  on  the  contempt  of  this  fleeting 
life — I  would  it  were  despised  by  me  as  I  could  wish,  and 
as  it  deserves — ^relates  to  die  wisdom  of  this  world,  or  that 
which  is  most  desirable  in  it.  That,  indeed,  is  more 
precious  than  the  riches  of  the  whole  earth,  and  all  that  is 
coveted  in  the  world  cannot  be  coQipared  with  it :  for  it  is 
written ^  "The  wisdom  of  tliis  world  is  foolishness  with 
God."  T\Tiich  saying  of  the  Apostle  I  propose  to  exemplify 
from  instances  within  my  own  knowledge.  I  will  mention 
the  Earl  of  Mellent,  the  most  sagacious  in  political  affau'S 
of  all  who  lived  between  this  and  Jerusalem^.  His  mind 
was  enlightened,  his  eloquence  persuasive,  his  shrewdness 
acute;   he  was  provident  aad  wily,  his  prudence  never 

»  1  Cor.  iii.  19.  «  See  the  History,  p.  246» 


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LETTER  TO   WALTEB.  309 

failed,  his  counsels  were  profound,  and  his  wisdom  great. 
He  had  extensive  and  noble  possessions,  which  are  com- 
monly called  honours  \  together  with  towns  and  castles, 
villages  and  farms,  woods  and  waters,  which  he  acquired  by 
the  exercise  of  the  talents  I  have  mentioned.  His  domains 
lay  not  only  in  England,  but  in  Normandy  and  France ;  so 
that  he  was  able,  at  his  will,  to  promote  concord  between  the 
kings  of  France  and  England,  or  to  set  them  at  variance,  and 
provoke  wars  between  fliem.  If  he  took  umbrage  against 
any  man,  his  enemy  was  humbled  and  crushed;  while 
those  he  favoured  were  exalted  to  honour.  Hence  his 
coffers  were  filled  with  a  prodigious  influx  of  wealth  in  gold 
and  silver,  besides  precious  gems,  and  the  contents  of  his 
ward-robe^.  But  when  he  was  in  the  zenith  of  his  power, 
it  happened  that  a  certain  earl  carried  off  the  lady  he 
had  espoused,  either  by  some  intrigue,  or  by  force  and 
stratagem.  Thenceforth,  even  to  his  declining  years,  his 
mind  was  distinrbed  and  clouded  with  grief,  nor  did  he,  to 
the  time  of  his  death,  regain  composure  and  happiness. 
After  days  abandoned  to  sorrow,  when  he  was  labouring 
imder  an  infirmity  which  was  the  precursor  of  deatli,  and 
the  archbishops  and  priests  were  performing  their  office 
for  the  confessional  pm^ification,  they  required  of  him  that 
as  a  penitent  he  should  restore  the  lands  which,  by  force  or 
fraud,  he  had  wrung  from  others,  and  wash  out  his  sins 
with  tears  of  repentance;  to  which  he  repUed,  "Wretched 
man  that  I  am !  if  I  dismember  the  domains  that  I  have 
got  together,  what  shall  I  have  to  leave  to  my  sons?" 
Upon  this,  the  ministers  of  the  Lord  answered,  "Your 
hereditary  estates,  and  the  lands  which  you  have  justly 
acquired,  are  enough  for  your  sons;  restore  the  rest,  or 
else  you  devote  your  soul  to  perdition."  The  earl  replied, 
**  My  sons  shall  have  aU.  I  leave  it  to  them  to  act  merci- 
fully, that  the  defunct  may  obtain  mercy."  Buttifter  his 
death  his  sons  were  more  careful  to  augment,  by  fresh 

*  An  "  honour"  was  a  law  term  not  merely  signifying  personal  rank  or 
title,  but  feudal  rights  of  a  superior  kind  over  large  territories,  including 
manors,  &c.,  dependent  upon  the  "  honour."  Thus  the  domains  dependent 
upon  the  castle  of  Pevensey  were  erected  into  the  Honour  of  the  Eagle. 

*  The  "  wardrobe  "  included  not  only  wearing  apparel,  but  the  hangings 
and  movable  furniture  of  palaces  and  castles. 


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810  HSKBT  OF  HTJNTlirQIM>N*S 

mjustioe,  the  possessions  their  ^ther  had  acquired,  than  to 
distribute  any  part  of  them  for  the  good  of  hiis  soul.  It  is 
evident,  therefore,  that  a  man's  highest  wisdom  may,  in 
the  end,  degenerate  not  only  to  sheer  folly,  but  to  blind 
insanity. 

Need  I  mention  Gilbert,  sumamed  the  Universal,  bishop 
of  London?  His  equal  for  learning  was  not  to  be  found 
even  at  Rome.  He  was  an  accomplished  master  of  the 
liberal  arts,  and  in  speculative  knowledge  he  had  no  equal. 
Living  in  France,  he  was  rector  of  the  school  of  Nivemois, 
when  the  bishopric  of  London  was  proposed  to  him,  and 
he  accepted  the  oflfer.  Notwithstanding  the  great  expec- 
tations which  were  formed  of  him,  he  soon  began  to  yield 
to  the  temptations  of  avarice ;  amassing  much,  spending 
little.  At  his  death  he  bequeathed  nothing;  but  King 
Henry  found  immense  hoards  of  wealth  in  his  coflfers. 
Even  the  bishop's  boots,  well  stuffed  with  gold  and  silver, 
were  brought  into  the  royal  treasmy '.  So  that  this  man  of 
consummate  learning  was  universally  admitted  to  be  the 
greatest  of  fools. 

I  will  say  a  word  of  Ralph,  the  king's  chancellor.  He 
was  a  man  of  ihe  greatest  sagacity,  astute  and  crafty ;  and 
he  applied  all  the  powers  of  his  intellect  to  disinheriting 
simple  folk,  and  easing  them  of  their  money.  During  this 
course  of  life  he  became  subject  to  liabitual  infinnity. 
But  such  was  his  passion  for  accumulating,  that,  even  then, 
resisting  God,  as  it  were,  and  overcoming  nature,  he  did 
not  cease  to  ruin  and  plunder  those  he  could.  His  greed 
grew  with  his  grief,  his  sins  with  his  sickness,  his  pecu- 
lations with  his  pains ;  imtil  at  last,  happening  to  fall  from 
his  horse,  a  monk  rode  over  him- ;  so  that  he  met  his  death 
in  an  extraordinary  way.  These  examples,  selected  from  a 
crowd  of  others,  may  serve  to  exhibit  the  folly  of  this  world's 
wisdom? 

Li  the  fourth  place,  I  will  address  myself  to  the  fortunes 
of  men  whose  names  are  great,  such  as  the  Lord  spoke  of 
when  He  said  to  David,  *'And  I  have  made  thee  a. great 

'  The  chattels  and  treasures  of  the  bishops  were  held  to  lapse  to  the 
crown  on  their  death. 

2  See  the  story  in  Henry  of  Huntingdon's  Historr,  p.  250  of  this  volume. 


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IJITTER  TO   WALTER.  811 

name,  like  unto  the  name  of  the  great  men  that  are  i^ 
the  earth. "^  David's  prosperity,  indeed,  was  blessed;  theirs 
of  whom  I  speak  was  otibierwise.  For  in  these  times  no 
one  can  acquire  a  great  name  except  by  great  wickedness. 
A  great  name  was  obtained  by  Thomas,  duke  of  Louvfun, 
in  France,  because  he  was  great  in  crime.  In  hostility  to 
aU  the  neighbouring  churches,  he  extorted  from  them  con- 
tributions to  his  money-bags.  When  any  one,  by  fraud  or 
force,  fell  into  his  hands,  the  captive  might  truly  say, 
"  The  pains  of  hell  compassed  me  round."  Homicide  wag 
his  passion  and  his  glory.  He  imprisoned  his  own  coun- 
tess, an  unheard-of  outrage ;  and,  cruel  and  lewd  at  once, 
while  he  subjected  her  to  letters  and  torture  by  day,  to 
extort  money,  he  forced  her  to  cohabit  with  him  by  night, 
in  order  to  mock  her.  Each  night  his  rude  followers 
dragged  her  from  her  prison  to  his  bed,  each  morning 
they  conveyed  her  from  his  chamber  back  to  her  prison. 
Amicably  addressing  any  one  who  approached  hun,  he 
would  plunge  a  sword  into  his  side,  laughing  the  while. 
For  this  he  wore  his  sword  naked  under  his  doak,  more 
frequently  than  sheathed.  Men  feared  him,  bowed  down 
to  him,  worshipped  him.  Reports  concerning  him  were 
spread  throughout  France.  MeanwMle,  his  possession?;* 
Ms  wealth,  his  followers,  daily  increased.  Do  you  desire 
to  hear  the  end  of  this  abandoned  man  ?  Wh^i  mortally 
wounded,  he  rejected  the  sacrament  of  penance,  turned  his 
•head  a\^y  from  the  consecrated  host,  and  so  died.  It 
may  well  be  said  of  him,  "  His  life  was  foUow'd  by  a 
fitting  end." 

You  knew  Eobert  de  Belesme,  the  Norman  eari  who 
was  thrown  into  prison^.  He  was  a  very  Pluto^  Megeera, 
*  Cerberus,  or  anydiang  ihat  you  can  conceive  still  more  hor- 
rible. He  preferred  the  slau^ter  of  his  captives  to  their  ran- 
som. He  tore  out  the  eyes  of  his  own  children,  when  in  sport 
they  hid  their  faces  under  his  cloak  *.  He  impaled  perB(Mas 
oi  both  sexes  on  st^es.  T«  butcheo*  men  in  the  most 
horrible  manner  was  to  him  an  a^eahle  feast.  His  name 
was  the  theme  of  general  discourse,  and  the  fearful  freaks 

»  2  Sam.  vii.  9.  ^  See  the  History  in  this  volume,  p.  ^45. 

*  WiUiam  of  Malmefibnry  gires  rather  a  diifeieiit  aooouat  «f  this  bar- 
•^btrky. 


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812  HBNRT  OF  Huntingdon's 

of  Robert  de  Belesme  became  common  proverbs.  At  length 
we  come  to  his  end ;  a  thmg  much  to  be  desired.  This 
cruel  man,  who  had  been  the  gaoler  of  others,  was  thrown 
into  a  dungeon  by  King  Henry,  where  he  died  after  a  long 
imprisonment.  Of  him,  whose  fame  had  been  spread  every- 
where, no  one  knew,  after  he  was  in  prison,  whether  he  was 
alive  or  dead ;  and  report  was  silent  of  the  day  of  his  death. 
I  have  given  an  account  of  two  out  of  many  such  monsters. 
Such  as  these  might  be  a  terror  to  the  devils  themselves, 
and  I  refrain  from  saying  any  more  about  them. 

Fifthly,  I  piupose  to  treat  of  those  who,  elevated  far 
above  all  other  mortals,  are  in  human  affairs  as  the  sum  of 
a  problem.  For  kings  are  to  their  subjects  a  sort  of  gods. 
Men  devote  themselves  t6  them  by  solemn  oaths,  and  the 
veiy  stars  of  heaven  appear  to  do  them  service.  So  great 
is  the  majesty  of  these  rulers  of  the  world,  that  men  are 
never  weary  of  looking  on  them,  and  their  subjects  regard 
them  as  something  more  than  mortal.  It  is  not,  therefore, 
to  be  wondered  at  that  not  only  women  and  children,  but 
men  of  light  minds,  should  eagerly  rush  to  gaze  at  them. 
But  even  the  wise,  and  men  of  grave  discretion,  after 
repeated  views,  are  drawn  by  some  indescribable  impulse 
to  their  presence.  What  is  tiie  reason  of  this  ?  What  can 
be  more  full  of  bliss  than  their  state  ?  Wliat  more  radiant 
with  glory?  Would  that  one  of  these  favoured  mortals 
could  talk  to  you  freely,  and  pour  into  yom:  ear  the  secrets 
of  his  heart !  You  would  then  form  a  very  different  judg- 
ment. While  others  count  them  most  happy,  they  are 
consumed  with  trouble,  tormented  with  fear.  No  man  in 
their  dominions  is  equally  wretched,  equally  wicked.  Hence 
it  is  said,  the  royal  state  is  wickedness.  King  Henry 
threw  his  brother,  the  Lord  Robert,  into  a  dungeon,  and 
kept  him  there  till  he  died.  He  caused  his  nephew's  eyes 
to  be  torrf  out ;  numbers  fell  into  his  hands  by  his  breach 
of  faith ;  numbers  he  put  to  death  craftily ;  he  broke 
many  solemn  oaths.  He  was  a  slave  to  ambition  and 
avarice.  \\Tiat  alarm  seized  him  when  his  brother  Robert 
led  an  army  against  him  out  of  Normandy  to  England ! 
He  was  terrified  into  making  peace ;  but  the  result  was  that 
he  caused  his  highest  nobles  to  commit  peijury,  because 
he  broke  the  treaty  and  took  his  brother  prisoner.    What 


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XJCTTBB  TO  WALTEB  313 

was  his  alann  when  the  Count  of  Anjou  took  his  castles, 
and  he  dared  not  march  to  oppose  him !  What  his  alarm 
when  Baldwin,  earl  of  Flanders,  carried  fire  through  Nor- 
mandy to  his  veiy  face,  and  he  was  unable  to  check  him ! 
What  was  his  anguish  of  mind  when  his  sons,  and  daughters, 
and  nobles  were  engulfed  in  the  sea !  With  what  anxiety  was 
he  devoured  when  his  nephew  WiUiam,  having  obtained 
the  earldom  of  Flanders,  it  seemed  certain  that  he  him- 
self would  lose  his  crown!  He  was  reckoned  the  most 
fortunate  of  kings,  but,  truly,  he  was  the  most  miserable. 

Need  I  speak  of  Phihp,  king  of  France,  and  Lewis,  his 
son,  both  of  whom  reigned  in  my  time,  whose  god  was 
their  belly,  and  indeed  a  fatal  enemy  it  was ;  for  such  was 
their  gluttony,  that  they  became  so  fat  as  not  to  be  able  to 
support  themselves.  Phihp  died  long  ago  of  plethora; 
Lewis  has  now  shared  the  same  fate,  though  a  young  man. 
What  can  we  say  of  their  fortunes  ?  Was  not  Phihp  often 
defeated  ?  Was  he  not  frequently  forced  to  fly  before  the 
vilest  of  the  people?  Was  not  Lewis  expelled  by  King 
Henry  from  the  Field  of  Mars  ;  and  driven  out,  as  is  appa- 
rent, by  his  own  subjects?  Ag§,in,  the  King  of  Norway 
was  lately  taken  prisoner  in  battle  by  his  own  brother,  who 
put  out  his  eyes,  dismembered  him,  cut  off  the  head  of  his 
sucking  child,  and  hung  his  bishop.  All  of  these  kings 
were  alike  ill-fated. 

But  you  will  allege  in  contradiction,  Why  have  you  so 
highly  extolled  King  Heniy  in  your  History  ^  while  here 
you  bring  against  him  such  serious  accasations  ?  My 
answer  is  this :  I  said  that  this  king  was  of  great  sagacity  ^ 
that  his  counsels  were  profound,  that  his  foresight  was 
keen,  and  that  he  was  renowned  in  arms,  that  his  achieve- 
ments were  glorious,  and  that  his  wealth  was  extraordinary. 
Notwithstanding  this,  all  that  I  have  said  to  his  disadvan- 
tage is  but  too  true ;  would  it  were  otherwise  \  But  per- 
il 1  See  Book  yii.  p.  261  of  tbe  present  Yolmne. 

'  It  13  singular  that  Henry  of  Huntingdon,  both  here  and  in  his  History, 
is  silent  on  the  literarj  accomplishments  of  Henry  I.,  which  obtained  for 
him  the  surname  of  Beavrclerc. 

^  The  free  manner  in  which' Henry  of  Huntingdon  treats  of  the  character 
»f  this  Norman  king,  while  he  was  still  living,  and  notwithstanding  his 
evident  personal  attachment  to  him,  is  creditable  to  his  own  character  foi 


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814  EESRX  OF  HT7KTZN6IXON*S 

haps  you  will  still  aver,  His  reign  has  now  lasted  thirty-five 
years  * ;  and  the  instances  of  his  good  fortnne,  if  you  count 
them,  are  more  in  number  than  adverse  events.  To  this 
1  reply,  Yes,  but  not  even  a  thousandth  part  of  his  good 
fortune  can  be  admitted  as  evidenoe  of  his  happiness ;  for 
the  very  occurrences  which  seemed  fortunate  were  always 
mingled  with  disappointment  When  he  gained  a  victory 
ovw  the  French  king,  with  what  protracted  anxieties  was 
that  short  triumph  followed !  Because,  in  a  word,  another 
army  was  immediately  raised,  which  caused  him  &esh  un- 
easiness. You  speak  with  admiration  of  his  length  of  days, 
and  the  many  years  of  his  rei^ ;  Jbut  a  man  of  God  has 
predicted  that  it  shall  not  last  two  years  longer.  Soon  you 
will  see  the  miserable  end  of  a  miserable  hfe.  Would  it 
could  be  otherwise !  But  so  it  will  be^.  Thus,  you  must 
not  fix  your  regards  on  these  unhappy  kings,  but  on  God, 
who  alone  is  blessed,  and  opens  the  kingdoms  of  bliss  to  his 
faithful  servants. 

My  sia^  and  last  treatise  coneems  those  great  men  and 
peers  of  the  reahn  who,  not  long  since,  were  most  potent, 
and  still  are  not  powerless.  But  they  are  nothing,  they 
are  nowhere ;  I  may  almost  say,  with  some  extravagance, 
they  never  were  ^.  Scarcely  any  one  i?emembers  them  now ; 
all  memory  of  them  has  begim  to  vanish ;  presently  it  will 
be  entirely  lost;  they  will  vanish  like  running  water. 
Listen,  then,  my  dear  Mend  Walter,  to  my  discour^  con- 
cerning those  illustrious  men  whom  we  liave  ourselvee 
seen,  &ough  it  may  be  somewhat^^dious.  In  our  time 
flourished  Lanfranc,  archbishop  of  ^Gante^buIy,  a  philo- 
sopher and  a  politician ;  he  was  succeeded  by  Anselm,  a 
wise  and  most  religious  prelate.  After  them  we  saw  BaljJi, 
who  was  worthy  of  his  Idgh  dignity.  Next,  the  see  of  Can- 
impartiality  as  «n  iustonan.  Perhtpi  it  also  exhibits  the.  spirit  of  inde- 
pendence felt  by  the  ecclesiastics  of  those  times. 

*  This  computation  fixes  the  date  of  Huntingdon's  Letter  to  Walter,  which 
has  been  assigned  to  a  later  period.  See  the  observatioBS  in  the  Preface  to 
.this  Tolume. 

^  This  prediction  was  .singularly  ^ferified,  if  we  may  suppose  that  Sing 
Henry's  state  of  health  at  this  time  was  not  such  as  to  rend^  it  £ai  from 
hasaidons.  The  king  died  before  the  end  of  the  year  in  whidi  this  epistle 
was  written,  ''the  day  after  ibe  liaast  of  St.  Andrew,"  the  2dth  <^  Deoeii- 
.ber,  lias.  ^  Sic    The  writer  e^c^Q& himsetf  alittite  fiirther  on.    , 


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LETTER  TO  WALTBE.  815 

terbury  was  filled  by  William,  of  whose  merit  nothing  can 
be  said,  for  he  had  none^ ;  at  present  it  is  filled  by  Theobald, 
a  man  worthy  of  all  praise.  In  our  time,  also,  Walkeline 
was  bishop  of  Winchester ;  he  was  succeeded  by  William 
Giffard,  a  man  of  true  nobility.  Both  these  are  dead,  and 
have  come  to  nothing.  Their  seat  is  occupied  by  Henry, 
the  king's  son,  who  promises  to  exhibit  a  monstrous  spec- 
tacle, compounded  of  purity  and  corruption,  half  a  monk, 
half  a  knight^.  In  our  time,  also,  Ingulfus  was  bishop 
of  Rochester ;  after  whom  came  Ralph,  then  Amulf,  then 
John.  All  these  are  dead ;  and  Asceline,  who  now  fills  the 
see,  cannot  hold  it  long  *.  In  our  time,  Maurice,  bishop  of 
London,  died;  he  was  succeeded  by  Richard,  and  after- 
wards by  Gilbert,  the  great  philosopher.  At  present,  the 
see  is  filled  by  Robert,  a  man  of  enlarged  mind.  These 
two  are  dead.  John,  the  physician,  held  the  see  of  Bath^ 
and  then  Godfi^ey ;  Robert  now  fills  it ;  and  these  also  are 
nothing.  At  Worcester  I  saw  Samson,  a  prelate  of  great 
eminence;  after  him  came  Teulf ;  now  we  see  Simon  there. 
At  Chester  we  saw  Robert  bishop ;  then  another  Robert, 
sumamed  Pecceth  * ;  now  the  see  is  filled  by  Roger,  who 
will  soon  be  nothing.     Herbert  had  Norwich,  a  mild  and 


*  In  the  "  Acts  of  King  Stephen,"  this  prelate  is  described  as  grasping 
and  covetous. 

'^  This  was  the  Bishop  of  Winchester,  and  papal  legate,  of  whom  Hmi- 
tmgdon  here  shrewdly  predicts  the  «ztiaoidinaiy  part  he  took  in  the  trou- 
bles of  the  succeeding  reign. 

3  Dacher,  in  his  edition  of  this  epistle,  inserts  in  tbe  text  the  name  of 
Baldulf,  as  Bishop  of  Rochester,  between  those  of  Ingulfus  and  Balph. 
There  was  a  bishop  of  Whitenie  in  QaUoway  of  that  name,  a.d.  791.  See 
'*  Huntingdon's  History,"  p.  189.  Dacher  adds  in  a  note,  **  Gnndulf "  [or 
Ingulf]  "died  in  1170  ,*  and  we  might  suppose  that  Asceline,  the  fourth  in 
succession,  was  dead  in  1147 ; "  which  is  most  probable  from  what  Hunting- 
don here  says ;  but  it  is  clear  that  the  "  Letter  to  Walter  "  was  written  m 
1135,  notwithstanding  that  Wharton  and  Petrie  hare  assigned  to  it  a  much 
later  date.  See  the  observations  on  this  subject  in  the  Prefiioe  to  the  pre- 
•ent  work. 

*  Haying  removed  it  from  Wells.  See  the  character  of  this  bishop  ia 
William  of  Malmesborj. 

^  Hahnesbury  says  that  Eobert  Pecceth  removed  the  see  of  Litchfield 
from  Coventry  to  Chester.  The  modem  bishopric  of  Chester  was  founded 
at  the  Reformation  in  1541. 


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316  HENBT  OF  Huntingdon's 

ieamed  bishop,  whose  writings  we  possess*.  He  was  suc- 
ceeded by  Everard,  who  was  deposed  for  his  excessive 
cruelty.  William  now  fills  that  see.  Hervey  was  the  first 
bishop  of  Ely,  and  was  succeeded  by  Nigel.  Osmond  was 
bishop  of  Salisbury,  succeeded  by  Roger,  a  great  statesman, 
who  is  now  the  king's  justiciary.  Robert  filled  the  see  of 
Exeter ;  he  became  blind,  and  is  now  dead,  and  his  nephew 
Robert  has  it.  Ralph  was  bishop  of  Chichester ;  in  whose 
place  Pelochin  was  appointed,  a  great  rogue,  who  was  con- 
sequently deposed.  WUliam,  who  had  the  bishopric  of 
Durham,  was  killed;  after  him  came  Ralph,  who  set  all 
England  on  fire  by  his  rapacity*;  they  were  succeeded  by 
Geoffrey,  and  William  now  fills  it.  We  have  seen  Gerard, 
archbishop  of  York,  and  after  him  was  Thomas ;  then  came 
Thurstan,  a  most  excellent  man ;  it  is  now  held  by  William, 
who  was  treasurer  of  that  church.  Remi,  bishop  of  Lin- 
coln, lived  in  our  days ;  he  was  succeeded  by  Robert,  a 
prelate  of  mild  virtues ;  Alexander,  a  faithfiil  and  munificent 
prelate,  now  fills  the  see*.     Thus  far  of  the  bishops. 

Among  our  cotemporaries  were  Hugh,  earl  of  Chester, 
and  Richard  his  son,  and  Ralph  their  successor,  and  now 
another  Ralph ;  all  who  preceded  him  are  gone.  You  knew 
that  able  but  abandoned  man,  Robert,  earl  of  Mellent^,  of 
whom  I  have  before  spoken,  and  now  his  son  Robert,  in 
praise  of  whom  little  can  be  said.  Have  you  not  seen 
Henry,  earl  of  Warwick,  and  his  son  Roger,  who  is  now 
living,  men  of  ignoble  minds?  You  knew  also  William 
Earl  Warrenne,  and  Robert  de  Belesme,  earl  [of  Shrews- 

*  Herbert,  enraamed  Losinga^  from  a  French  word,  signifying  to  cozen, 
Temoved  the  see  of  East  Anglia  from  Thetford  to  Norwich.  He  was  at  one 
time  the  greatest  simonist  in  England.  William  of  Malmesbury  gives  a 
long  character  of  him,  representing  him  to  have  repented  and  become,  as 
Huntingdon  intimates,  an  excellent  bishop  as  well  as  scholar.  The  "  writings '* 
here  referred  to  are  probably  his  letters,  the  MS.  of  which  was  lately  dis- 
covered at  Brussels,  and  they  have  since  been  published  there  and  in  Lon- 
don. See  William  of  Malmesbury's  History, "  Bohn's  Antiquarian  Library," 
p.  352.     He  died  a.d.  1100,— Sax.  Chron. 

*  This  distinguished  prelate  is  frequently  mentioned  in  the  Eighth  Book 
of  Huntingdon's  History.  See  also  the  "  Acts  of  King  Stephen  "  in  the 
present  volume. 

'  See  the  notes  to  this  letter,  pp.  308,  311. 


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LETTER  TO  WALTEB.  817 

bury],  with  Kobert,  earl  of  Morton,  of  whom  I  have  spoken 
in  my  History  of  England^;  as  also  Simon,  earl  of  Hun- 
tingdon; Eustace,  count  of  Boulogne,  and  many  others: 
their  very  memory  is  wearisome.  In  their  day  they  had 
great  power,  and  appeared  worthy  of  the  closest  scrutiny ; 
now  they  scarcely  deserve  mentioning.  The  very  parch- 
ment on  which  their  names  are  written  seems  ready  to 
perish,  nor  are  eyes  to  be  found  which  would  be  willing  to 
read  it.  My  own  letter  is  witness,  which  no  one  or 
scarcely  any  one,  will  read,  though  it  contains  the  names 
of  so  many  powerfiil  men,  worthy  to  be  rescued  from  ob- 
livion. Why  should  I  mention  Aldwine*,  my  own  master, 
who  was  abbot  of  Kamsey,  and  Bernard,  his  successor; 
after  whom  came  Kemald,  a  clever  but  intemperate  man ; 
who  was  succeeded  by  Walter,  the  present  dignified  abbot 
Where,  now,  are  these  ?  Thorold,  abbot  of  Peterborough ; 
and  Amulf,  and  Mathias,  and  Goodric,  and  John,  and  Martin^ 
all  whom  I  knew,  are  dead  tod  come  to  notbing.  But  you 
ask  why  I  include  the  living  with  the  dead,  and  say  ih&t 
they  all  are  come  to  nothing?  For  this  reason:  as  the 
dead  are  come  to  nothing,  the  others  soon  will,  or,  to 
speak  freely,  have  already  come.  For  that  which  is  called 
our  life  is,  as  Tully  says,  death.  When  you  begin  to 
live,  you  begin  to  die.  I  pass  over  those  celebrated  men^ 
Kalph  Bassett  and  his  son  Kichard,  with  Geoflfrey  Kidel, 
who  were  justiciaries  of  aU  England,  and  others  out  of 
number,  to  oflfer  whom  respectful  homage  was  once  a  plea- 
sure to  me ;  but  now  that  they  are  dead  it  seems  labour  in 
vain  to  write  even  the  shghtest  notices  of  them. 

Reflect,  then,  my  Mend  Walter,  how  worthless  is  this 
present  hfe ;  and  since  we  see  that  even  the  most  powerful, 
who  were  in  possession  of  the  fullest  measure  of  its  wealth, 
accomplished  nothing,  and  that  we  ourselves  accomplish 
nothing,  let  us  seek  another  way  of  life  in  which  we  may 
expect  happiness  and  shall  not  fail.  Rouse  yourself,  my 
brother ;  rouse  yourself  and  look  about  you,  for  what  you 
have  sought  for  in  this  life  you  have  never  found.  Did  not 
Alexander,  a  king,  so  to  speak,  all  but  omnipotent,  die  at 

•  Pp.  242,  243. 

^  Probably  the  same  person  as  AlbinnS;  mentioned  before  as  a  member  of 
the  Chapter  of  Lincoln. 


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818  HENRY  OP  Huntingdon's 

last  of  a  little  poison?  Did  not  Julius  Osesar,  a  man 
equally  or  still  more  powerful,  after  he  had  hecome  master 
of  the  world,  fall  by  the  stroke  of  a  small  poignard  ?  What 
he  aimed  at  he  did  not  obtain.  Seek,  therefore,  that  which 
you  can  find ;  seek  the  life  that  comes  after  this  life,  for 
life  is  not  to  be  found  in  the  present  life.  Almighty  God ! 
how  truly  are  we  called  mortals !  For  death  clings  to  us 
while  we  live ;  but  our  dissolution,  which  we  call  death, 
puts  an  end  to  death.  Whatever  we  do,  'vdiatever  we  say, 
perishes  from  the  moment  it  is  said  or  done.  The  remem- 
brance of  them,  indeed,  as  in  the  case  of  the  deceased, 
survives  for  a  while ;  but  when  that  also  has  vanished,  all 
our  acts  and  words  are  annihilated,  as  it  were,  by  a  second 
dealh.  Where  is  now  what  I. did  yesterday?  where  what  I 
said?  They  am  swallowed  up  in  the  deadi  of  endless  ob- 
livion. Let  us  then  hope  for  the  death  of  this  living  deadi, 
since  we  cannot  escape  it  but  by  the  death  of  our  bodies, 
which  is  the  middle  term  between  life  and  death. 

I  had  soaroely  fim^ed  this  letter  wh^i  it  was  announced 
to  me  that  the  Mend  to  whom  it  is  addressed  had  ceased  to 
live.  What  is  the  lot  of  mortals,  but  to  be  helpless  at  their 
birth,  wretched  during  life,  painful  at  their  ^id  ?  O  death, 
how  sudden  is  thy  grasp,  how  unexpected  thy  attack,  how 
relentless  thy  stroke !  May  He,  Walter,  who  is  the  phy- 
sician of  the  soul  after  this  life  is  ended,  vouchsafe  to  ad- 
minister to  thee  the  healing  antidote  of  his  mercy,  that  thou 
mayest  attain,  the  life  of  enduring  health.  My  letter  now 
will  never  reach  you :  a  short  epitaph  is  all  that  I  can 
ofifer,  a  memorial  of  you  on  which  my  tears  will  Ml  while 
I  write: — 

Satires,  once,  and  songs  of  loTe 
Woke  the  echoes  of  the  grove; 
Then  my  yonthful  minstrelsy, 
Walter,  was  addressed  to  thee. 
Now  my  heart,  oppress'd  with  griel^ 
Teams  to  find  some  short  relief 
While  I  deck  thy  ftin*ral  bier. 
And,  bedew'd  with  many  a  tear. 
Fondly  weaving  moomM  verse. 
Wreathe  a  chaplet  for  thy  hearse. 

He,  my  better  half,  is  fled. 
Lying  numbered  with  the  dead ; 


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LETTEB  TO   WALTER.  819 

He,  my  ligbt,  my  joy,  my  crown, 
"Whose  fond  love  retum'd  my  own. 
Chill'd  the  heart  that  freely  gave. 
Gold  the  hand  ontstretch'd  to  sare ; 
Deeming  what  he  gave  as  naught. 
In  his  modesty  of  thought 
Twice  bless'd  was  his  charity, 
Open  hand  and  beaming  eye 
Met,  to  stay,  the  suppliant's  cry. 
Walter,  of  unrivall'd  worth. 
Sleeps  in  consecrated  earth  ; 
Numbered  now  among  the  blest, 
May  his  soul  have  grateful  rest! 


THE  END  OF  THE  LETTEB  TO  WALTER. 


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THB 

ACTS    OF   STEPHEN, 

KING  OF  ENGLAOT)  AND  DUKE  OF  NORMANDY. 

BT  AN  UNEKOWir  BUT  CONTEUPOEAKEOUS  AT7TH0B. 


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Digitized  by  LjOOQIC 


fHB 

ACTS   OF   KING   STEPHEN, 


BOOK  I. 


On  the  death  of  King  Heniy,  who  had  given  peace  to  the 
realm,  and  was  the  fadier  of  his  people,  his  loss  threw  the 
whole  kingdom  into  trouble  and  confiision.  Duriiig  his 
reign  the  law  was  purely  administered  in  the  seats  of  jus- 
tice; hut  when  lie  was  removed,  iniquity  prevailed,  and 
they  became  the  seed-beds  of  corruption.  Thenceforth, 
England,  before  the  resting-place  of  right,  the  habitation  of 
peace,  and  the  mirror  of  piety,  was  converted  into  an  abode 
of  malignity,  a  theatre  of  stnfe,  and  a  school  of  rebdlion. 
The  sacred  bonds  of  mutual  concord,  befcare  reverenced  by 
the  nation,  w^e  rent  asunder ;  the  ties  of  near  relationship 
were  dissolved ;  aud  the  people,  long  clothed  in  the  gar- 
ments of  peace,  clamoured,  and  became  frantic  for  war* 
Seized  with  a  new  fmy,  they  began  to  run  riot  against  each 
other ;  and  the  more  a  man  injured  the  innocent,  the  hi^ear 
he  thought  of  himself.  The  sanctions  of  the  law,  wldch 
form  the  restraint  of  a  rude  population,  were  totally  disre- 
garded and  set  at  nought ;  and  men,  giving  the  reins  to  all 
iniquity,  plunged  without  hesitation  into  whatever  crimes 
their  inclinations  prompted.  In  the  words  of  the  prophet, 
^  There  was  no  sounchiess  from  the  sole  of  the  foot  to  tho 
crown  of  the  head;"  for  from  the  lowest  to  the  highest 
fiheir  minds  were  diseased  and  wrought  vidence,  or  sane-^ 
tioned  the  violence  of  others  by  silent  assent.  Even  the 
wild  animals,  which  in  former  times  were  preserved ♦peaci- 
ably  in  paiks  «nd  inclosiires  IhroioglMmt  the  eountiy,  were 
now  tamed  loose,  and  harassed^  every  one  hunting  ^lem 

T  3 


Digitized  by  LjOOQIC 


894  ACTS   OF   KING  STEPHEN.  [BOOK  I. 

without  reserve.  This,  indeed,  was  a  minor  calamity, 
not  much  to  be  complained  of;  and  yet  it  was  wonderful 
how  so  many  myriads  of  wild  animals,  which  in  large  herds 
before  plentifully  stocked  the  country,  suddenly  disappeared, 
80  that  out  of  this  vast  number  scarcely  two  could  now  be  found 
together.  They  seemed  to  be  entirely  extirpated,  insomuch 
that  it  is  reported  a  single  bird  was  a  rare  sight,  and  a  stag 
was  nowhere  to  be  seen.  The  people  also -turned  to  plun- 
dering each  other  without  mercy,  contriving  schemes  of 
craft  and  bloodshed  against  their  neighboiu*s ;  as  it  was 
said  by  the  prophet,  "  Man  rose  up  wifliout  mercy  against 
man,  and  every  one  was  set  against  his  neighbour."  For 
whatever  the  evil  passions  suggested  in  peaceable  times, 
now  that  the  opportunity  of  vengeance  presented  itself, 
was  quickly  executed.  Secret  grudgings  burst  foith,  and 
dissembled  malice  was  brought  to  light,  and  openly 
avowed. 

"While  the  English  were  in  this  state  of  turbulence 
and  trouble,  and  the  reins  of  justice  now  being  relaxed, 
gave  loose  to  every  sort  of  wickedness.  Stephen,  count  of 
Boulogne,  a  nobleman  of  illustrious  lineage,  landed  in 
England  with  a  small  retinue.  He  was  the  best  beloved 
by  Henry,  the  late  pacific  king,  of  all  his  nephews,  not  only 
because  he  was  of  near  kindred  to  him,  but  on  account  of 
the  vii-tues  by  which  he  was  eminently  distinguished.  In 
him,  what  is  rare  in  our  times,  wealth  was  joined  with 
humility,  mimificence  with  courtesy;  while  in  all  warlike 
undertakings,  every  encounter  with  the  enemy,  he  was  bold 
and  valiant,  cautious  and  persevering  ^  Thus  gifted,  when 
the  report  of  King  Henry's  death  reached  him  he  was 
beyond  sea;  but  instantly  conceiving  a  great  design,  he 
hastened  to  the  coast,  and  embarking,  with  fortunately  a 
fair  wind,  he  sailed  for  England,  on  which  his  thoughts 
were  fixed.  Landing,  as  I  have  said  before,  vnth  few 
followers,  he  proceeded  to  London,  the  royal  metropolis^. 

*  The  cbaracter  giren  of  Stephen  hy  "William  of  Malmesbury  corre- 
sponds with  this ;  but  he  adds,  that  *'  he  was  kind  as  far  as  promise  went, 
bat  was  sure  to  disappoint  in  its  truth  and  execution."  -See  "Modem  History," 
Bohn's  Edition,  p.  491. 

'  "  Oervase  of  Canterbury  says,  that,  coming  oyer  in  a  swifi-sniling  ship, 
the  people  of  Dover  repulsed  him,  and  the  inhabitants  of  Canterbury  shut 
their  gates  against  him. — Colojph,  40, 10." — Sewll, 


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A.D.1136.]  STEPHEN   ELECTED   KING.  825 

At  his  arrival,  the  city,  which  had  been  in  mourning  for 
the  death  of  King  Henry,  came  out  to  meet  him  with 
shouts  of  joy,  and  received  him  in  tiiumph ;  regaining  in 
Stephen  what  they  had  lost  in  their  protector  Henry.  The 
men  of  rank  and  experience,  assembled  in  council^  to  pro- 
vide for  the  welfare  of  the  nation,  unanimously  resolved 
to  elect  him  king.  For  they  said  that  the  kingdom  was 
exposed  to  danger  when  the  source  of  order  and  justice 
failed ;  and  that  it  was  therefore  of  the  utmost  importance 
to  choose  a  king  at  once,  who  might  re-establish  peace  for 
the  common  good,  punish  malcontents  by  force  of  arms,, 
and  administer  the  laws  justly.  They  claimed  it  also  as 
their  imdoubted  right  and  especial  privilege^,  when  the 
throne  was  vacant  by  the  king's  death,  to  provide  that 
another  should  take  his  place  and  follow  in  his  steps ;  and 
they  said  that  there  was  no  one,  as  it  appeared  to  them, 
who  could  fulfil  the  duties  of  a  king,  and  put  an  end  to  the 
dangers  of  the  kingdom,  except  Stephen,  who  seemed  sent 
to  them  by  Divine  Providence,  and  who  appeared  to  all 
worthy,  both  from  his  illustrious  birth  and  his  great  quali- 
ties. These  allegations  being  favourably  received,  at  least 
no  one  openly  controverting  them,  the  assembly  came  to 
the  resolution  of  oflfering  the  crown  to  Stephen,  and  he 
was  chosen  king  by  common  consent ;  this  proviso  being 
first  made,  and,  as  commonly  reported,  ratified  by  oath, 
that  as  long  as  he  lived  the  citizens  should  aid  him  by 
their  wealth,  and  support  him  by  their  arms,  and  that  he 
should  bend  his  whole  energies  to  the  pacification  of  the 
kingdom^. 

Stephen  having  thus  secured  the  name  and  dignity  of 
king  in  so  fortimate  a  manner,  took  arms  with  the  resolu- 

^  Malmesbnry  says  that  very  few  of  the  nobles  attended ;  Huntingdon, 
that  most  of  them  gave  in  their  adhesion,  but  that  probably  was  afterwards. 
Stephen  owed  his  election  to  the  influential  bishops  of  Salisbury  and  Win- 
chester, and  the  acclamations  of  the  Londoners. 

^  According  to  the  free  Anglo-Saxon  institutions;  which,  it  appears,  were 
not  forgotten  after  three  reigns  of  Norman  kings. 

^  Our  author,  neither  here,  nor  in  subsequently  relating  the  circumstances 
of  Stephen's  coronation,  takes  any  notice  of  the  charter  of  liberties  promised 
by  him,  and  afterwards  granted  and  ratified  by  his  solemn  oath,  as  Hunting- 
don says,  at  Oxford.  Malmesbury  has  preserved  the  document,  and  charges 
Stephen  with  having,  through  evil  counsels,  violated  his  oath. 


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326  ACTS   OF  KI5G   STEPHEN  [BOOK  I. 

tion  of  restoring  tranquillity ;  and,  successfully  encountOTing 
the  bands  of  robbers  who  ravaged  that  part  of  the  kingdom, 
he  made  his  name  great  at  the  veiy  beginning  of  his  reign. 
At  that  time  there  was  a  man  of  low  condition,  for  he  was 
King  Henry's  porter,  but  ready  at  mischief,  and  greedy  to 
plunder  the  poor.  This  man,  at  the  head  of  a  band  of 
rude  coimtry  folk  and  some  hired  soldiers,  kept  ihe  whole 
neighbouriiood  in  alarm  by  his  endless  depredations  wi^ 
fire  and  sword.  Stephen,  however,  encounterod  him  bddly, 
killing  his  comrades  or  throwing  them  into  jmson;  and 
taking  their  leader  also,  he  after  a  while  hung  him  on  a 
gallows.  After  this,  suddenly  collecting  a  strong  force  fix)m 
all  quarters,  he  hastened  to  join  Henry,  the  bishop,  on 
whom  his  chief  reliance  was  placed.  He  was  Stejdien's 
brother,  both  on  his  father  and  mother's  side,  and  a  man 
of  extraordinary  prudence  and  persuasive  eloquence,  and, 
fortmie  favouring  him,  had  become  Abbot  of  Glastcmbury, 
Bishop  of  Winchester,  and  Apostolical  Legate  in  England. 
The  bishop,  extremely  pleased  with  his  brother's  success, 
came  to  meet  him  with  the  principal  citizens  of  Winchester, 
and  after  a  short  conference  conducted  him  with  great  pomp 
into  the  second  cit}'  of  the  kingdom. 

There  was  at  that  time  in  the  city  of  Winchester  a  man 
named  William  \  who,  being  the  trusty  treasurer  of  King 
Henry,  had  been  frequently  tampered  with  by  the  bishop, 
with  offers  of  a  bribe,  to  give  up  the  castle  and  the 
treasure  it  contained ;  but  the  more  he  was  pressed,  the 
less  he  was  disposed  to  yield.  As  soon,  however,  as  he 
hcEird  of  the  king's  coming,  whether  through  love  or  fear  of 
him  I  know  not,  he  presented  himself  before  him  with  a 
cheerful  aspect,  and  made  him  master  of  King  Henry's 
treasure,  containing  great  hoards,  gathered  throughout  all 
England  from  the  time  of  the  oldest  kings,  together  with 
the  castle.  Keports  of  the  new  king's  arrival  spreading 
throughout  the  kingdom,  he  was  joyfully  acknowledged  by 
numbers,  those  especially  who  were  before  in  friendly  rela- 
tions with  himself  and  his  brothers,  and  these  seconded  his 
efforts  with  all  their  power.  Among  these  was  William, 
archbishop  of  Canterbury,  a  man  wiSi  a  smooth  face  and 

^  Snrnamed  Pont  de  TArche. 


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▲.p.  1135.]  STS^ORf^  TZHM   GQUnCASSED.  827 

Strictly  religious  xnaimars,  bat  much  more  roBiy  to  amass 
money  than  to  di^exuse  it  For  at  his  dei^  the  king's 
officers  foimd  immense  smns  secretly  hoarded  in  his  cd^, 
idiieh  if  he  had  distributed  for  chantaUe  uses  when  alive, 
in  imitation  of  the  steward  in  the  Ck»spel,  ir^  made  him- 
self  M^ids  of  the  mafmnon  of  unxi^teouimess,  and  dis- 

rsed  abroad  and  gave  to  the  poor,  so  that  his  name  should 
had  in  everlasting  remembrance,  he  woidd  have  better 
fulfilled  the  character  of  a  good  shephard.  The  archbishop 
being  urged  by  the  king's  acQi^rents  to  anoint  and  conse- 
crate the  king,  and  tlms  siq>ply  by  the  exercise  of  his 
sacred  functions  what  seined  to  be  wanting,  he  met  their 
instances  with  the  reasonable  answer  that  it  oti^  not  to 
be  done  lightly  or  suddenly,  but  should  be  first  maturely 
considered,  and  earful  inquiry  made  whether  it  was  wise 
and  expedient.  For  the  king,  he  argued,  is  chosen  for  the 
purpose  of  govaning  all,  axid  that  whmi  elected  he  may 
oiforce  ^be  rights  of  his  government  on  all;  so  then  it  is 
pliun  that  all  should  make  common  agreement  in  con* 
firming  his  election,  and  that  it  should  be  determined  by 
e(»nmon  consent  whether  it  shall  be  ratified  or  annulled. 
He  added  that  King  Henry  in  his  lifetime  had  bound  all 
the  principal  men  of  the  realm,  by  a  most  solemn  oath,  not 
to  acknowledge  the  titie  of  £tny  one  afi^r  his  own  death  but 
Ids  daughter,  who  was  married  to  the  Count  of  Anjou,  or,  if 
he  himself  survived  her,  his  daughter's  heir.  Thc^ore 
tiiere  was  great  presumption  in  endeavouring  to  set  aside 
tbis  engagement,  the  more  especially  as  not  only  was  King 
Henry's  daughter  living,  but  she  was  favoured  in  having 
heirs  of  Iter  hodj.  To  this  the  Idng's  partisans  replied 
Irith  confidence,  *^We  do  not  deny  that  King  Henry's 
policy  in  the  marriage  of  his  daughter  was  wise,  as  it  led  to 
a  firm  and  stable  peace  between  the  people  of  Normandy 
and  Anjou,  between  whom  there  were  fi^quent  disturbances. 
With  respect  to  the  succession,  that  imperious  king,  whom 
no  one  could  resist^  with  a  voice  of  thunder  compelled, 
mtiier  than  persuaded,  the  great  men  of  the  kingdom  to 
ti^e  the  oatii  of  fealty;  for  though  he  foresaw  Ihat  an 
involuntary  oath  would  not  be  considered  binding,  still  he 
wished,  like  Ezekiel,  to  have  peace  in  his  days,  and  by  the 
marriage  of  one  woman  create  a  bond  of  union  between 


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828  ACTS  OF   KING   STEPHEN.  [BOOK  I« 

countless  multitudes.  We  willingly  admit  that  this  thing 
was  agreeable  to  him  while  he  lived,  but  we  say  that  he 
would  not  have  been  satisfied  that  it  should  be  unalterable 
after  his  death ;  for  those  who  stood  round  him  when  he 
was  at  the  last  extremity,  and  hstened  to  his  true  confes- 
sion of  his  sins,  heard  him  plainly  express  his  repentance 
for  the  oath  which  he  had  enforced  on  his  barons,  ^^^^gjuce, 
therefore,  it  is  evident  that  an  oath  extorted  by  violence 
ISom  any  man  cannot  subject  him  to  the  charge  of  perjury, 
it  is  both  allowable  and  acceptable  that  we  should  freely 
acknowledge  for  king  him  whom  the  city  of  London,  the 
metropolis  of  the  kingdom,  received  without  opposition, 
and  who  foimds  his  claims  on  his  lawful  right,  through  his 
mother,  the  late  king's  sister.  We  are  also  firmly  convinced 
Hiat  by  acknowledging  him  aud  supporting  him  with  all 
our  power,  we  shall  confer  the  greatest  benefit  on  the 
kingdom,  which,  now  torn,  distracted,  and  trodden  down, 
will  in  the  very  crisis  of  its  fate  be  restored  to  order,  by  the 
efforts  of  a  man  of  firmness  and  valour,  who,  being  exalted 
hy  the  power  of  his  adherents  aud  the  wisdom  of  his  bro- 
thers, whatever  was  wanting  in  himself  would  be  fiilly 
supplied  by  their  aid."  * 

Impelled  by  these  and  other  considerations,  which  for 
brevity  I  omit,  the  archbishop  anointed  and  consecrated  *^ 
Stephen  king,  both  in  England  and  Normandy,  with  a  large 
attendance  of  the  clergy,  which  being  known,  and  the  re- 
port spreading  throughout  England,  almost  all  the  great 
men  of  the  kingdom  willingly  and^everently  gave  their 
adhesion,  and  many  of  them,  receiving  presents  and  grants 
of  land  fi'om  the  king,  did  homage  to  him,  and  liberated 
themselves  from  the  fealty  they  had  before  sworn.     Among 

*  The  particularity  with  which  the  anonymous  author  states  the  discus- 
sions in  this  assembly,  as  well  as  in  the  previous  council  at  London  and  on 
other  occasions,  confirms  the  idea  suggested  in  another  place  that  he  was 
in  a  position  to  be  familiar  with  all  that  passed. 

^  It  would  appear  that  the  several  events  before  related,  the  two  coun- 
cils, with  the  expedition  against  the  insurgents,  and  the  seizure  of  the  late 
king's  treasure  at  Winchester,  were  all  crowded  into  a  few  weeks.  William 
of  Malmesbury  says  that  Stephen  was  crowned  on  the  20th  Dec,  1135^ 
22  days  after  the  decease  of  his  uncle.  Others  state  that  it  took  place  on 
the  26th  of  December.  It  is  remarkable  that  our  author  does  not  give  a 
single  date  throughout  his  narrative.  I  shall  add  the  dates  of  the  more  im* 
^rtant  events  from  contemporary  writers. 


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A.D.  1136.]       EXPEDITION  AGAINST  THE  WELSH.  329 

tiiese  was  Kobert,  earl  of  Gloucester,  the  bastard  son  of 
King  Henry,  a  man  of  great  ability,  and  the  highest  pru- 
dence. On  his  father's  death,  report  says,  that  the  crown  was 
offered  him,  but  with  sound  judgment  he  did  not  acquiesce 
in  the  proposal;  observing  that  it  was  more  just  to  leave 
the  kingdom  to  his  sister's  son,  who  had  a  better  title  to  it^ 
than  to  have  the  presumption  to  usurp  it  himself.  After 
being  frequently  summoned  by  messages  and  letters  from 
the  king  to  attend  his  court,  at  last  he  came,  and  was  re- 
ceived with,  extraordinary  favour,  everything  he  required 
being  granted  on  his  doing  homage  ^  His  submission,  at 
lengSi  gained,  was  followed  by  that  of  almost  all  the  rest  of 
England. 

Upon  this,  the  king,  attended  by  a  large  body  of  troops, 
made  a  royal  progress  through  the  kingdom,  influencing 
those  who  were  favourable  to  his  pretensions  to  give  him 
then'  allegiance  freely  and  dutifully  in  the  various  monas- 
teries, cities,  and  churches,  and  listening  with  courtesy  and 
deference  to  all  who  laid  their  wants  before  him.  To  create 
tranquillity  throughout  the  realm  required  great  efforts,  to 
restore  union  among  hisrsubjects  great  sacrifices ;  and  the 
pacification  not  only  of  Englaikl  but  of  Wales,  was  a  work 
of  much  labour  and  vast  expenditure.  Wales  is  a  woody 
and  pastoral  country,  running  parallel  wi^ltEf  borders  of 
England  on  one  side,  and  bounded  by  the  sea  through  its 
whole  extent  on  the  other.  It  is  stocked  with  game  and 
fish,  and  feeds  large  herds  of  milch-kine  and  beasts  of 
burthen.  The  men  it  rears  are  half-savage,  swift  of  foot, 
accustomed  to  war,  always  ready  to  shift  both  Hieir  habita- 
tions and  their  allegiance.  When  the  Normans  had  con- 
quered England,  they  established  their  power  in  the  country 
bordering  on  their  territories  by  erecting  numerous  castles.. 
Heducing  the  natives  to  subjection,  and  settling  colonies  of 
their  own  followers,  they  introduced  laws  and  courts  of 
justice  to  promote  order,  and  the  country  became  so  fruitful 
and  abounding  in  plenty,  that  it  might  be  considered  not 
inferior  to  the  most  fertile  part  of  Britain.  But  on  King 
Henry's  death,  when  the  peace  and  concord  of  the  kingdom 

•  "He    dissembled   for    a  time  his  secret  intentions." — William  of 
Mahneshury. 


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3B0  ACTS    OF  KING  STEPHEN.  [BOOK  I. 

was  buried  with  him,  the  Webh,  who  always  sighed  for 
deadly  rerenge  agaiDSt  their  masters,  threw  off  tibe  yoke 
in^ch  had  been  iijiposed  oa  Ihem  bj  treaties,  and, 
issuing  in  bands  from  all  parts  of  the  comitiy,  made  hostile 
inroads  in  different  quarters,  laying  waste  the  towns  with 
robbery,  fire,  and  swi^,  destroying  houses  and  butchering 
the  populaticfli.  The  first  object  of  ikmr  attadc  was  the 
4£[strict  of  Gower^  on  the  sea-coast,  a  fine  and  abundantly 
fruitM  country,  and,  hemming  in  with  their  levies  cm  foot, 
the  knights  and  men-at-arms  who,  to  the  number  of  516, 
were  coUeeted  in  one  body,  they  put  them  aU  to  the  sword. 
After  which,  exulting  in  llie  success  of  their  first  imder- 
taking,  they  overran  all  the  bordera  of  Wales,  bent  on  every 
sort  of  mischief,  and  ready  for  anj  crime,  neither  sparing 
age  nor  respecting  rank,  and  sujfering  neither  place  nor 
season  to  be  any  protection  fi:om  their  violence.  When  the 
king  received  mtelligence  of  this  rebellion,  he  raised,  for 
tbe  purpose  of  quelling  it,  a  considerable  force  of  cavalry  and 
archers,  whom  he  took  into  pay  at  a  great  expense,  and  dis- 
patched them  against  the  insurgents*.  But  of  this  fcwce, 
after  many  of  their  number  v^rere  dain  fighting  gloriously, 
ihe  rest,  shrinking  to  encounter  the  ferocious  enemy,  re- 
treated in  disgrace  after  fruitless  toil  and  expense. 

There  lived  at  that  time  in  Wales  one  Bidbard  Fitz- 
Gilbert,  a  man  of  distinguished  gallantry,  surroimded  by 
wealthy  kinsmen  and  vassals,  possessed  himsetf  of  vast 
domains  and  numerous  castles,  who  kept  all  his  neighbours 
in  check  by  leagues  to  which  they  were  bound  by  hostages, 
so  that  the  country  became  so  peaceable  and  affluent,  Qiat 
it  might  have  been  easily  taken  for  a  second  England.  This 
man  having  demanded  of  the  king  some  great  favour  which 
was  refused  him,  departed,  it  is  said,  vrith  the  intention  of 
"sommencing  hostilities.  On  his  entering  Wales  vrith  a 
arge  retinue,  he  was  waylaid  and  slain  by  the  Welsh,  hi» 

*  A  well-known  district  of  South  Wales,  which  nearly  correspMids  with 
the  present  coimty  of  6Iainoi|[aB. 

^  Neither  Malraesbury  nor  Huntingdon  notice  this  expedition  into  Waleff^ 
which  was  not  led  by  the  king  in  person,  while  they  mention  Stephen's 
excursion  into  the  north  of  England  against  the  King  of  the  Scots,  shortly 
after  his  cerronation,  in  Lent  of  the  same  year,  which  is  passed  over  by  the 
author  of  "  The  Acts  of  King  Stephen." 


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A.D.  1136.]  SirCCESSBS   OF  THE  WELSH.  3S1 

escort  escaping.  It  becoming  bruited  abroad  tiiat  the 
greatest  man  in  Wales  had  fallen,  the  people  of  several  ds- 
tricts,  assembling  in  great  numbers,  entered  his  territories, 
and  being  divided  ir/*o  three  bodies,  in  military  order,  these 
foot-soldiers  attacked  Richard's  horsemen,  who,  joined  by 
others  who  came  to  their  aid  from  the  neighbouring  towns 
and  castles,  made  a  force  of  3000  men.  The  attack  being 
made  in  three  quarters,  they  were  defeated  by  the  insur> 
gents,  who  pursi^  them  shouting  and  pouring  in  flights  of 
arrows.  Many  were  miserably  slain,  some  were  driven  into 
a  river  and  drowned,  and  others  were  burnt  in  churches  and 
houses.  The  whole  district,  xxxvi.  miles  in  extent,  was 
overrun  and  plundered  till  nothing  was  left ;  the  old  were 
exposed  to  death  or  derision ;  the  yoimg  of  both  sexes  were 
bound  and  dragged  into  slavery;  women  oi  every  age  were 
openly  and  shamefully  ravished.  They  stormed  the  castles 
of  some  barons,  and  closely  beleaguered  othars,  under  whose 
yoke  they  had  hitherto  bowed,  but  over  whom  they  now 
lorded  in  turn.  One  of  Richard's  castles,  which  was  impreg- 
nably  fortified,  and  in  which  his  wife,  the  Earl  of  Chester's 
sister,  had  sought  shelter,  was  closely  invested.  She,  de- 
prived of  her  husband's  protection,  with  the  despondency 
of  her  sex,  was  tortured  with  anxiety.  Thus  strictly  inclosed, 
and  short  of  provisions,  for  numerous  bands  of  tiie  enemy 
patrolled  the  country,  and  without  hope  of  relief,  she  was 
worn  out  with  grief  and  care.  But  stOl  holding  out,  when 
her  immediate  neighbours  were  unable  to  offer  her  any 
assistance,  Milo,  who  was  lord  of  Gloucester*  aud  aft^- 
wards  obtained  an  earldom  rather  by  his  crafty  genius  thaa 
his  right  of  inheritance,  devoted  hunself  and  his  followers 
to  the  peril  of  effecting  her  release.  He  was  impelled  to 
undertake  it  as  much  by  compassion  and  his  natural  feel* 
ing  for  the  distressed  lady,  as  by  the  king's  command,  who 
had  written  to  enforce  the  enterprise.  Tracking  his  way, 
therefore,  through  the  enemy's  posts,  among  the  gloomy 
recesses  of  the  woods  and  over  the  mountain  tops,  he  re- 
solutely approached  the  besieged  castle,  and  withdrawing 

>  Babert,  bastard  son  of  Henry  I.,  liad  the  earldom  of  Gloncester,  of 
vhich  be  made  Bristol  the  chief  seat,  and  where  his  tomb  has  been  dis- 
covered in  the  former  priory  of  St.  James.  Milo  of  Gloucester  was  after- 
wards created  by  Stephen  earl  of  Hereford. 


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333  ACTS   OF  KINO  STEPHEN.  [BOOK  I. 

the  lady  and  her  people  in  safety,  returned  triumphantly  to 
his  own  territories. 

The  king  having  learnt  that  the  Welsh  were  endeavouring 
to  excite  rebellion  in  this  neighbourhood,  resolved  to  offer 
further  resistance  to  their  rash  presumption.  He  therefore 
sent  for  Baldwin,  the  brother  of  Richard  [Fitz-Gilbert]  already 
mentioned,  and  entrusting  him  with  a  large  sum  of  money, 
commanded  him  to  carry  rehef,  as  soon  as  possible,  to  his 
brother's  territorities,  and  resolutely  strive  to  crush  the 
enemy.  On  receiving  the  money  he  got  ready  a  body  of 
cavahy,  and  with  the  addition  of  500  stout  bowmen  reached 
the  castle  of  Brecknock  with  all  his  forces.  There  he  heard 
that  the  enemy  had  advanced  to  meet  him  in  vast  multi> 
tudes,  and,  blocking  up  the  roads  by  felling  trees  across 
^em,  had  summoned  their  confederates  to  assemble 
IfHp  every  quarter.  Alarmed  by  this  intelligence,  he  in- 
terrtff)ted  his  march  and  halted  for  a  long  time,  hoping 
that  the  enemy  would  be  wearied  out,  or  exhausted  by 
famine.  Meanwhile,  he  abandoned  himself  to  gluttony  and 
sloth,  until  he  had  prodigally  spent  all  his  supplies ;  when 
he  withdrew  in  poverty  and  disgrace. 

Robert  Fitz-Harald,  also,  a  man  of  the  noblest  descent, 
was  employed  in  subjugating  the  Welsh,  but  with  better 
results.  For  gaining  a  great  victory  over  a  numerous  body 
of  them,  he  added  impregnable  fortifications  to  a  deserted 
castle,  and  placing  in  it  a  chosen  garrison  resolute  to  hold 
it  to  the  last  extremity,  after  these  successful  events  he  re- 
turned to  England  with  a  few  followers  to  recruit  his  forces. 
Meanwhile  the  enemy,  taking  advantage  of  his  absence,  and 
apprehensive  of  his  speedy  return,  gathered  together  in 
one  body,  and  after  a  long  siege,  when  provisions  failed  in 
the  garrison,  and  Robert  could  not  arrive  in  time  to  resist 
their  furious  assaults,  they  compelled  its  surrender.  The 
Welsh  creating  these  disturbances,  the  king  thought  that  he 
was  struggling  in  vain,  and  throwing  away  his  money  in 
attempting  to  reduce  them,  and  that  the  better  plan  was  to 
suffer  for  a  while  their  unbridled  violence,  until,  ceasing  to 
oppose  them,  they  should  quarrel  among  themselves,  and 
perish  by  famine  or  cut  one  another's  throats.  And  this 
soon  happened ;  for,  thinking  of  nothing  but  robbery  and 
murder,  die  country  was  left  without  men,  the  fields  with- 


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.A.D.  1136.]  ORDER   RESTORED   IN  ENGLAND.  838 

out  tillage,  so  that  scarcely  any  means  of  life  was  left  to 
those  who  came  after ;  and  the  wild  animals  which  followed 
the  footsteps  of  their  ravages  perishing  from  mmrain  and 
starvation,  men  themselves  died  amongst  them  of  the  pesti- 
lential atmosphere.  I  have  thus  collected  in  one  series  all 
the  events  which  occurred  in  Wales  at  diflferent  times,  in  a 
short  accoimt,  in  order  that  I  may  not  wander  from  my 
regular  narrative  as  often  as  some  remarkable  action  re- 
quires to  be  related  in  its  proper  place. 

The  king  thus  actively  employed,  as  I  have  before  men- 
tioned, in  tranquillizing  the  kingdom  and  consolidating  its 
peace,  was  courteous  and  obliging  to  all  men ;  he  restored  the 
exiles  to  their  estates ;  in  conferring  ecclesiastical  dignities  he 
was  free  from  the  sin  of  simony ;  and  justice  was  administered 
without  bribe  or  reward.  He  treated  with  respect  church- 
men of  all  ages  and  ranks ;  and  so  kind  and  gentle  was  his 
demeanour,  that,  forgetful  of  his  royal  dignity,  on  many 
occasions  he  gave  way,  in  others  he  put  himself  on  an 
equality  with,  and  sometimes  even  seemed  to  be  inferior  to 
his  subjects.  And  now  England  had  assumed  its  ordinary 
state  of  repose,  and  all  men,  by  the  grace  of  God,  through 
whom  kings  reign,  quietly  submitted  without  force  or  any 
sort  of  persecution,  except  certain  of  the  principal  and 
nearest  friends  of  King  Henry,  whom  he  had  raised  from 
low  degree  to  the  highest  offices  hi  his  court.  '  These  per- 
sons he  attached  to  him  in  course  of  time  by  the  strictest  ' 
obligations,  conferring  on  them  the  highest  honours  and 
large  estates,  making  them  earls  and  sheriflfs  of  counties, 
and  appointing  them  judges  of  all  causes  in  the  courts  sum- 
moned by  the  king's  command.  They  were  now  summoned 
to  attend  his  court,  and  were  promised  a  continuance  of  the 
same  favours  and  the  same  honours  which  had  been  con- 
ferred on  them  by  King  Henry.  For  a  while,  confining 
themselves  to  the  neighbourhood  of  their  castles,  they  de- 
clined to  obey  the  king's  summons,  partly  on  accoimt  of  the 
fealty  which  they  had  sworn  to  his  cousin,  King  Henry's 
daughter,  and  partly  because,  as  the  great  nobles  of  llie 
realm,  they  were  disgusted  at  the  pride  and  pomp  of  those 
who,  though  sprungfrom  nothing,  had  been  raised  above  them 
in  rank  and  possessions,  and  exceeded  them  in  power.  There 
was  another  reason  for  their  dreading  to  come  to  the  king's 


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^84  ACTS  OF  XIKO  8T&PHEK.  [BOQKX. 

court — last,  having  to  mnswer  in  his  presence  the  (^mpiaints 
of  the  poOT,  and  the  cries  of  the  widows  whose  knds  the^r 
had  seized,  they  might  he  compelled  to  yield  to  justice  vfhst 
they  had  unjustly  acquired,  nut  the  king  inclined  to  great 
forhearance,  and  wishing  to  try  &ir  means  hefore  he  resorted 
to  ioTCBy  sent  some  of  those  persons  he  most  trusted  to  the 
malcontents  widi  a  eommbsion  to  use  every  means,  either 
by  graitle  woids,  or,  if  they  failed,  by  threats,  for  reconciling 
them  to  his  government  The  thr^tts  prevailed,  and  a  safe 
conduct  being  granted  them  for  ^oing  to  and  returning 
£rom  court,  and  all  their  demands  being  conceded,  they  did 
homage  to  the  king,  and,  taking  the  oath  of  allegiance;, 
bound  th^nselves  faithMly  to  his  service.  Amcmg  the  rest 
were  Payne  Fitz-John  and  Miio,  already  mentioned ;  the  first 
having  the  counties  of  Hereford  and  Shrewsbury,  the  other 
that  of  Gloucest^,  mw^er  his  jurisdiction.  These  nobles 
had  so  stretched  their  power  during  King's  Henry's  reign, 
that,  from  the  river  Severn  to  the  sea,  throughout  the 
borders  betwe^i  England  and  Wales,  no  one  was  safe  from. 
their  litigation  and  extortion.  After  his  death,  actuated 
more  by  apprehension  of  King  Stephen  than  by  any  feeling 
of  their  own  weakness,  when  they  were  watering  an  oppor- 
tunity of  making  disturbances,  both  came  to  a  wretched  end 
without  having  time  for  repentance.  Payne,  while  he  was 
diastising  the  W^shmen,  was  pierced  throu^  the  brain  by 
an  arrow,  the  only  one  of  his  party  who  fell.  Milo,  sur- 
viving to  cause  the  king  and  the  realm  great  trouble  by  his 
crafty  policy,  as  will  be  fully  related  in  the  sequel,  was  at 
last  transfiked  by  &D.  arrow  in  his  breast,  by  one  of  hia 
attendants  vMle  he  was  hunting  deer;  and  died  on  the 
spot 

All  the  great  lords  having  thus  sworn  leaity  to  tiie  king, 
ithe  rulers  of  the  church,  witii  the  princdpal  laymen,  ^v^rd 
summoned  to  a  synod  at  London^ ;  ass^nbling  with  one 
accord,  and  the  pillars  of  the  diurch  being  airanged  m 
order,  and  tiie  commonalty  also,  as  is  their  custom,  intrude 
i^  thems^v«s  in  an  irregular  mann^,  various  matters  of 

*  Thw  flypod  is  not  tnentioned  by  Malmesbory,  wlto  seems  to  0nl)etitute  &r 
its  proceedings  one  at  Oxford.  The  present  synod  was  probably  held  at 
Easter  of  this  same  year,  1136,  which  Huntingdon  tells  ifs  was' spent  by 
tbs  king  act  London. 


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AJ>.  1186.]  STATE  OF  THB   (SESVBCBL